Local education committee to host civic education forum

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COLUMBIA - The Education Committee of the League of Women Voters of Columbia-Boone County will host a meeting at the Columbia Public Library on Tuesday to discuss and encourage more civic education teachings in Columbia Public Schools.  

Members of the education committee said they are concerned about youth not participating in the voting process. 

Petty Placier, the co-president of the League of Women Voters of Columbia-Boone County, said the committee fears children and young adults are not receiving the civic education they need in schools to vote properly. 

"We decided to look at the schools, what are they doing, what are they teaching about things like voting, American History, the constitution," Placier said. "These are the kind of traditional topics, but are they updating it?"

Placier said there will be a panel discussion at the beginning of the meeting, with time for the public to voice their comments and concerns at the end.

The panelist will consist of: Susan Adler, professor emerita, UMKC, and past president of the Council for Social Studies; Nicholas Kremer, Social Studies and Language Arts coordinator, Columbia Public Schools; and Terry Schlemeier, of Terry Schlemeier & Associates. Vena Long, chair of the Education Committee of the League of Women Voters.

Placier said the education committee wants voting to be modernized. 

"I think a lot of people think why don't we make voting easier?" Placier said. "So I can vote on my phone?"

Placier said she hopes especially young adults will attend the forum.

"We want to ask those people the tough questions, or questions about what are you doing?" Placier said. "What's the national discussion or does the school district even emphasize citizenship and education participation?"