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Oregon Law Will Require High School Students Receive Civics Education Before They Graduate


Read on for a bit of Oregon “Civics Education” from me:

Senate Bill 513 A (2021) requires that Oregon high school students receive one half-credit in civics education prior to graduation. It has been approved by both legislative chambers and will (we assume) be signed by the Governor. (Visit the Governor’s homepage, look under the Administration tab, and click on the Bills Signed link for a list.)

How this law will be implemented will be fun, um, interesting to watch. It appears everyone is fairly realistic about the speed of this process. The bill says: “Applies to high school diplomas awarded on or after January 1, 2026.”

Read the bill, and soon to be law, at the Oregon Legislature’s OLIS database, where you can also read testimony presented to legislators in support of and in opposition to 2021 SB 513 A, and the enrolled bill (which is the version signed by both chambers and sent to the Governor). Visit the legislature’s Glossary for definitions of enrolled and engrossed bills.

Once the Governor signs the bill, it will be given an Oregon Laws Chapter number and then, usually, codified in the Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS), with numbers assigned by Legislative Counsel (often appearing in the bill itself or assigned after the bill has become law). The engrossed bill says SB 513A (2021)creat[es] new provisions; and amend[s] ORS 329.451.” The final language will appear in the enrolled bill, which had not yet been posted to OLIS at the time I wrote this blog post.

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