Write Your Member of Congress
Through SGAP’s parent company, National Write Your Congressman, you can use the Constituent Opinion Ballot to write your members of congress about key legislation underway. NWYC provides small businesses with nonpartisan information and research on top issues and pending legislation in Congress.
America’s Legacy Book
The Foundation of Freedom
Written for middle and high school students, the new “America’s Legacy” book focuses on the text and history of the United States’ Founding Documents, including the Constitution, Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence. Additional sections cover the elements of citizenship (how to be a good American citizen); the three branches of government and separation of powers; and excerpts from great American speeches. Interesting “Freedom Facts” and SGAP infographics are included throughout the book.
Established by National Write Your Congressman in 1992, the Student Governmental Affairs Program is a national nonprofit organization headquartered near Dallas, Texas. SGAP brings U.S. government and civics to life through a monthly newsletter that educates K-12 students about current legislation in Congress, presents pro/con perspectives from both sides of the aisle, and asks them to vote on the issues. SGAP supplements classroom instruction with nonpartisan educational materials that teach responsible citizenship through active participation. SGAP’s civics educational program is received by students in all 50 states and D.C., with about four million students having participated since its inception.
In 2019, SGAP received an Honorable Mention in the National Category for the American Civic Collaboration Awards (“Civvys”). Developed by the Bridge Alliance Education Fund, Big Tent Nation, and the National Conference on Citizenship in 2017, the Civvys Awards are among the most high-profile and visible aspects of the civic renewal movement.
Featured SGAP Infographics
“Thank you for this program. It is very helpful for AP Government and Economics Honors and Standard levels. Once I get them hooked, the students ask when is the next one coming?”
Educator in Sanford, FL
“I give the America’s Legacy books to each of my AP Government students as a reward for taking and completing the class. It is something that students have come back years later showing me their copy explaining how helpful it was in their college classes.”
Educator in Prosper, TX
“One of our main goals at DISD is to build civic literacy among our students and build good citizens. Your program teaches them critical thinking, civil discourse, and other skills they will need after they graduate. SGAP is an extension of the social studies standards and provides great information.”
Social Studies Instructional Coordinator, Dallas Independent School District
Issue 1: Energy Independence
1. Why would a country want to achieve energy independence? What are the benefits?
2. Which approach should be at the heart of U.S. national energy policy—increasing energy production domestically or shifting the emphasis to renewable energy resources such as wind and solar? Outline the reasons for your answer.
3. What should the United States do about climate change? Should it adopt strong policies to reduce the use of fossil fuels? Or should it encourage more research and hold off on adopting strict requirements for now? Why?
Changes to Longstanding Traditions Signal Shakeups for 2024 Presidential Elections: IN APRIL, both the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Republican National Committee (RNC) initiated changes to longstanding party traditions, signaling shakeups to come for the 2024 presidential elections. On April 13, the Democratic National Committee voted to stop giving Iowa and New Hampshire the automatic privilege of going first in holding presidential nominating contests in the primary process.
Issue 1: Border Wall
1. Do you think the current approach to U.S. border security is effective? What ideas do you have to make it more effective?
2. Do you think all, some or no national borders around the world should have walls or fences separating countries? Why?
3. What differences do you discern between the two border crossings with Mexico and Canada?
4. Do you think that the border wall has become a political symbol for its supporters and opponents? Why or why not?
Congress Steps into Spring with New Legislation: Biden Signs Spending Bill into Law that Dedicates Billions to Ukraine Aid but Falls Short of Climate Support. ON MARCH 15, President Joe Biden signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act, a 2,741-page spending bill that will fund the federal government through September and provide $13.6 billion in fresh aid to Ukraine as the country fights back against Russia’s invasion. The spending package, known as the omnibus, will provide funding through fiscal year 2021, which started in October. Lawmakers have been negotiating over the legislation for months and have passed three stopgap funding bills to keep the government running in the meantime.
Issue 1: 32-Hour Workweek
1. How do you think having a shorter workweek will affect workers’ productivity? Will it rise, fall or remain the same? Why?
2. How might a shorter workweek be good for the environment?
3. In Japan, Microsoft trialed a four-day workweek and saw improvements in workers’ productivity and job satisfaction. Do you think this would work in the U.S.? Why or why not?
4. Is a four-day workweek suitable for every company? Why or why not?
5. How did the COVID pandemic change American workers’ expectations about work/life balance?
6. How might spending less time working result in greater workforce focus and productivity?
ON JAN. 27, Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer announced he would retire, giving President Joe Biden an opportunity to nominate a new jurist to the country’s highest court. In a letter to Biden, the justice said his resignation would take effect at the end of the current term, usually in late June or early July. Since Justice Breyer announced he would retire, court watchers have identified a shortlist of potential contenders for the seat—particularly based on Biden’s promise to name a Black woman to the nation’s highest court. At press time, Ketanji Brown Jackson, J. Michelle Childs and Leondra Kruger have been named as three possible nominees.