On September 17, 1787, the Founding Fathers signed the most influential document in American history: the United States Constitution. This document established the framework of our government and the rights and freedoms that “We the People” enjoy today. The Constitution was signed by thirty-nine courageous men who changed the course of history. Every American shares in this legacy of liberty and has the responsibility as a citizen to respect and defend the values of our founding fathers as well as participate in the unfolding story of freedom.
This year will mark the 227th anniversary of the signing.
Constitution Day became a national observance in 2004, when the Congress passed a bill designating September 17 as the day for citizens to commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution and learn more about our founding document. The chief sponsor, Senator Robert Byrd (WV) once said, "Our ideals of freedom, set forth and realized in our Constitution, are our greatest export to the world." He added the Constitution Day clause to his 2004 federal spending bill because he believed that all citizens should know about their rights as outlined in the Constitution. This clause mandates the teaching of the Constitution in schools that receive federal funds, as well as federal agencies.,/p>
In honor of Constitution Day, all educational institutions receiving federal funding are required to hold an educational program pertaining to the U.S. Constitution.
In DoDEA, schools are asked to use the week of September 15-19, 2014, to implement instruction (grades PK-12) that highlights the Constitution and citizenship. Staff and students are encouraged to commemorate the signing of the Constitution by engaging in programs and instruction that bring awareness.
Numerous resources are available for all employees and students to learn more about the Constitution.