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AB-700 Pupil instruction: voter education. (2013-2014)

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Assembly Bill No. 700
CHAPTER 483

An act to amend Section 33540 of the Education Code, relating to pupil instruction.

[ Approved by Governor  October 02, 2013. Filed with Secretary of State  October 02, 2013. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 700, Gomez. Pupil instruction: voter education.
Existing law establishes the Instructional Quality Commission, and requires the commission, among other duties, to ensure that specified historical documents are incorporated into the history-social science framework when it is revised.
This bill would also require the commission, when the history-social science framework is revised, to ensure that voter education information is included in the American government and civics curriculum at the high school level, including, but not limited to, information on the importance of registering to vote in local, state, and federal elections, where and how to access and understand the voter information pamphlet and other materials to become an informed voter, and certain other information.
The bill would provide that it shall not be construed as requiring the commission to meet specifically for purposes of implementing the changes made by the bill, and would require that any revisions to the history-social science framework made pursuant to the bill be implemented in accordance with the commission’s regular adoption schedule.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 33540 of the Education Code is amended to read:

33540.
 (a) The state board and the department shall request that the commission review and revise, as necessary, the course requirements in the history-social science framework developed by the History-Social Science Curriculum Framework and Criteria Committee of the state board to ensure that minimum standards for courses in American government and civics include sufficient attention to teaching pupils how to interact, in a practical manner, with state and local governmental agencies and representatives to solve problems and to petition for changes in laws and procedures.
(b) When the history-social science framework is revised as required by law, the commission shall do both of the following:
(1) Ensure that voter education information is included in the American government and civics curriculum at the high school level, including, but not limited to, information on the importance of registering to vote in local, state, and federal elections, how to register to vote, both online and by mail, what the requirements are to register to vote, how to request an absentee ballot, how to fill out and return an absentee ballot, what to expect on election day, how to find a polling place, and where and how to access and understand the voter information pamphlet and other materials to become an informed voter.
(2) Ensure that the following historical documents are incorporated into the framework, as appropriate:
(A) The Declaration of Independence.
(B) The United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights.
(C) The Federalist Papers.
(D) The Emancipation Proclamation.
(E) The Gettysburg Address.
(F) George Washington’s Farewell Address.

SEC. 2.

 This act shall not be construed as requiring the Instructional Quality Commission to meet specifically for purposes of implementing the changes made by Section 1 of this act, and any revisions to the history-social science framework made pursuant to Section 1 of this act shall be implemented in accordance with the commission’s regular adoption schedule.