September 2, 2016

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Announcement of Resources for Constitution Day on September 17, 2016

I am pleased to bring to your attention the recognition of Constitution Day on September 17, 2016.  As you know, Congress passed legislation that requires the implementation of an educational program pertaining to the United States Constitution, on a date designated by statute officially as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day.  This 2004 Congressional initiative is authorized by Section 111 of Division J of Public Law 108-447 and applies to educational institutions receiving federal funding from the U.S. Department of Education (USED).

All schools may determine what kind of educational programs are appropriate for their students.  Some informational resources pertaining to the Constitution that may be useful in planning educational activities are listed on the USED’s Web site at http://www2.ed.gov/policy/fund/guid/constitutionday.htmlThis link takes you out of the Virginia Department of Education website.  Documents of American History including the text of the Constitution of Virginia, Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, Declaration of Independence, Constitution of the United States of America with Amendments and the Virginia Charters can be found on the Virginia Department of Education Web site at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/standards_docs/history_socialscience/resources/documents_american_history.pdfThis link takes you out of the Virginia Department of Education website.  Information about citizenship and civics is also available at other Web sites such as the National Constitution Center at http://constitutioncenter.org/constitution-day/This link takes you out of the Virginia Department of Education website.

If you need additional information about Constitution Day, please contact Betsy Barton, history and social science specialist, Office of Humanities and Early Childhood, by e-mail at Betsy.Barton@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-3454.

SRS/BSB/vdg