Cursive Bill Released From Delaware House Education Committee

It seemed to be an even split between advocates and those who oppose the bill, but State Rep. Andria Bennett’s House Bill was released from committee today with 12 votes.  Next stop, the House Ready list.  Many of the folks who opposed the bill were in favor of students learning cursive but felt that was a decision best left to the local school board and not a mandate from the state.  The Delaware Department of Education opposed the bill for the same reasons, along with the Delaware Association of School Administrators and the Delaware School Boards Association.

Both sides cited research or studies weighing the pros and cons of the bill.  I supported it and gave public comment on how my son seemed to like cursive more than regular writing.  Another advocate for students with disabilities, Robert Overmiller with the Governor’s Advisory Council for Exceptional Citizens, also supported the bill because of the beneficial nature for special needs students.  A retired teacher supported the bill.

State Rep. Bennett said her idea for this bill came last Christmas when her own daughter was unable to read her grandmother’s cursive writing in a Christmas card.  Some advocates said it is important children know how to read original historic documents, such as The Declaration of Independence.  One gentleman said he would not hire someone at his company who didn’t know cursive since so many old property deeds and paperwork were written in cursive and they would not be able to understand those documents.  One parent stated they were vehemently against the bill and that it shouldn’t matter if kids can read historic documents in cursive because it is all available online.  She also said grandmothers are texting and using Instagram more and more these days.  State Rep. Joe Miro said with our state budget deficit we should not be mandating curriculum at the state level.

If you are in favor of this bill, please contact your state legislator and let them know!  I know I will call my own State Rep, Trey Paradee and ask him to support this bill!

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9 thoughts on “Cursive Bill Released From Delaware House Education Committee

  1. The ability to write and print in a legible hand is most necessary to maintain our culture. Proper printing of numerals allows the student to line up a math problem for a solution. Teaching would be effective if students work could be read.

    It is necessary to teach the traditional manner of holding a pen. All students 1 thru 12 currently used the modified club grip. We have failed these soon to be adults. Bring back legibility.

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  2. Re:
    “Many of the folks who opposed the bill were not in favor of student’s learning cursive” — the use of “student’s” here leads me to wonder whether some who defend a mandate of cursive are warmer in its defense than they would be in the defense of grammar or punctuation.

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        1. No, it is called a “typo”, which I fixed. Which also reminded me that they were in favor of students learning cursive but felt it shouldn’t be a state mandate. Another “typo” on my part. I won’t pretend I am the grammar king of the world. But I do try to look out for the best interest of students. I make NO profit for what I advocate for. Can you say the same?

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          1. Do you do your job for free?

            Do the producers of cursive curricula do their job for free, either.

            Since I do not have that luxury, my web-site — like the letter which you considerately reproduced in full — also mentions and recommends handwriting products and resources which aren’t produced by me and aren’t sold by me. (Many of those products and resources are, in fact, cost-free, and I receive no kickback from the ones that aren’t.)
            As far as I can find out, the million-dollar corporations which produce cursive textbooks (whose sales are strongly benefited by cursive mandates) do not recommend any handwriting products or resources that they themselves do not produce and sell. Have you asked your “conflict of interest” questions of, say, Zaner-Bloser, Incorporated — the head of whose handwriting textbooks division (Kathleen Wright) regularly testifies at legislative hearings for cursive mandate bills? It is common for legislators to receive mailings on cursive from sales representatives at Zaner-Bloser and other companies in the cursive handwriting business, shortly before those legislators (independently, one presumes) draw up bills to mandate cursive handwriting.

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