New Bill Requires Students to Learn Cursive by the End of 5th Grade

It looks like students in Ohio might have to work twice as hard this coming school year (2019-2020), adding on another task to their to-do list. The Ohio Senate passed a bill this month, requiring each student in the state to be able to write cursive by the end of fifth grade.

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The measure, known as House Bill 58, requires the State Department of Education to craft a new curriculum and lesson plan for elementary school students before the start of next year. Under the measure, students would be required to legibly write a letter in print by the end of third grade, and write cursive before going onto sixth grade.

The bill was originally first approved in June, and the legislation was introduced in February 2017. Although there have been numerous changes made to the bill, it has always suggested that the Ohio Department of Education include instructional materials to assist the development of handwriting in classrooms. Any change to the measure must be approved by the Ohio House of Representatives before heading to the Republican Gov. John Kasich to be signed.

While most question to the relevance of cursive in the age of technology, students from more than 10 states are still required to learn cursive handwriting, the most recent states including Alabama and Louisiana in 2016. The curriculum, which is optional for Ohio schools to implement, would be aimed at children beginning kindergarten.

Language experts suggest that fluent cursive helps students master writing task such as sentence construction and spelling since they don’t have to think much about forming letters. Cursive is able to help develop fine motor skills and allows students to comprehend national historical documents such as the United States Constitution.

Do you know how to write in cursive?

Watch: Declaration of Independence

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