Is American History Still Taught in Public Schools?

America has a rich and complex history that has shaped the country into what it is today. From the arrival of the first settlers to the present day, there is no shortage of events and figures that have influenced the nation. But as the world becomes more modernized and globalized, one might wonder if American history is still taught in public schools.

The Importance of Teaching American History

Before delving into whether or not American history is still taught in public schools, it’s important to understand why it’s crucial for students to learn about it. For one, learning about history helps us understand where we come from and how we got to where we are now. It teaches us about our shared values, struggles, and achievements as a nation.

Furthermore, studying history helps develop critical thinking skills by analyzing past events and their impact on society. It also provides context for current events by showing how they are connected to past events.

Current State of American History Education

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) reports that American history education has declined in recent years. In 2014, only 18% of eighth-graders scored at or above proficiency level in U.S. history.

Additionally, some states have been criticized for revising or omitting certain aspects of American history from their curriculum. For example, Texas has faced backlash for downplaying slavery’s role in the Civil War and emphasizing Christian influences on the founding fathers.

Efforts to Improve American History Education

In response to these concerns, several organizations have taken steps to improve American history education. The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) offers grants to support projects that strengthen humanities education at all levels.

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History provides resources and professional development for educators to enhance their teaching of American history. They also offer a History Teacher of the Year award to recognize outstanding teachers.

Furthermore, some states have implemented new standards for American history education. California, for example, has adopted a framework that emphasizes the contributions of marginalized groups and covers topics such as Japanese internment during World War II.


In conclusion, while there have been concerns about the state of American history education in public schools, efforts are being made to improve it. It’s crucial that students learn about their country’s past and how it has shaped the present. By understanding American history, students can develop critical thinking skills and become well-informed citizens.