The results of the 2016 National Assessment of Educational Progress show that nearly 75% of all high school schools fail to understand how the US government works. Compared to the results of a similar study conducted five years ago, test scores fell by 3%. Students were asked questions related to the three branches of government as well as rights and responsibilities of US citizens. Statistically, Hispanic students showed the most progress. Between 2010 and 2016, Hispanic students increased their basic scores by 12%.
Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor believes that high school and elementary school instructors are failing to teach students the basic principles of government. This trend has been in effect for the past few decades, and it appears that the public school system is completely inept. Students that are able to get private tutoring or those who excel in other areas of study are more likely to understand how the US government works. Even so, 78% of eighth graders do not understand even the most basic fundamentals of civics.