SB 271
Requires high school students and students seeking a high school equivalency certificate to receive a passing grade on a basic civics test
LR Number:
Last Action:
3/18/2015 - Hearing Conducted S Education Committee
Journal Page:
Calendar Position:
Effective Date:
August 28, 2015

Current Bill Summary

SB 271 - This act creates the "Missouri Civics Education Initiative."

This act repeals the prohibition on students receiving a certificate of graduation without having satisfactorily passed an examination on the provisions and principles of the United States and Missouri constitutions, American history, and American institutions. (Section 170.011)

Beginning January 1, 2016, every high school student attending a public school, charter school, or private school, except a private trade school, or a student seeking to complete a high school equivalency certificate must take and receive a passing grade on a basic civics test. The civics test must be similar to the civics portion of the United States naturalization test produced by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. (Section 170.345)

The civics test must use the same one hundred questions used by USCIS that are administered to applicants for United States citizenship. A student must score correctly on sixty of the one hundred questions to receive a passing score. A student may take the test as many times as needed but must receive a passing score to receive a high school diploma, a certificate of high school graduation, or a high school equivalency certificate. (Section 170.345)

Each public school, charter school, or private school, except for private trade schools, and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education must certify that a student has taken and received a passing grade on the test. (Section 170.345)

Each district must adopt a policy permitting a student with a disability to receive a waiver from the basic civics test requirement if the student's IEP committee recommends it. (Section 170.345)

This act is identical to SB 273 (2015) and similar to SCS/HCS/HBs 578, 574 & 584 (2015) and provisions contained in CCS#2/HCS/SCS/SB 172 (2015) and in HCS/SB 113 (2015).