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Civic Learning on CBS This Morning

Americans don’t know their Constitution. In 2019, the Institute for Citizens & Scholars found that only four in 10 could pass the U.S. citizenship test. But this isn’t new news. In fact, it has been a source of concern for many observers for decades.

“You could call it a scandal. I call it, actually, a proxy for a larger set of problems,” said Citizens & Scholars president Raj Vinnakota in a CBS interview in mid-January, 2021.

The segment, which aired on CBS This Morning, had Tony Dokoupil out on the street quizzing passersby using some questions from the citizenship test. Most of the people he stopped didn’t fare well.

Knowing and understanding the Constitution is vital to a flourishing civil society. “You need to understand how our government works in elections and so on,” Raj was quoted. “But you also need to understand why we set it up that way. And if you don’t understand both of those pieces, you are going to be in trouble. You can’t actually function effectively in our society.”

See the full segment above or read the full article here.


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This new identity reflects the organization’s twin commitments: to strengthen American education and to rebuild a flourishing civil society. Citizens & Scholars is the new name of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.

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