|For Immediate Release
||CONTACT: Christi Powers
State Bar of Wisconsin
(800) 444-9404, ext. 6025
org cpowers wisbar wisbar cpowers org
First Congressional Conference to Launch State Civics Campaign
State Bar of Wisconsin Joins Washington DC Summit
MADISON, September 23, 2003 - The State Bar of
Wisconsin joins a group of legislators, educational leaders and other
state officials this week for the First Annual Congressional Conference
on Civic Education in Washington DC.
Dee Runaas, State Bar law-related education coordinator, leads a team
of delegates for a national forum on how to reinvigorate civics
education in public schools. Co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of
Education, the conference will address how to improve student
performance, increase teacher preparation and augment state and local
policy requirements for civics education.
"Wisconsin is actually ahead of the curve because last year a task
force was formed to identify methods to improve civic education in
Wisconsin schools," Runaas said. "Along with those recommendations,
we'll be working with national leaders to launch concrete efforts to
strengthen existing programs and to develop new initiatives."
The delegates will return from Washington to build on ideas generated
last year by the Wisconsin Civics Education Task Force. Recommendations
called for professional development of teachers, increased learning
about democratic practices, and using schools and communities as
At the summit this week in Washington DC, Runaas is joined State
Superintendent of Public Instruction Elizabeth Burmaster, Rep. Luther S.
Olsen (R-Berlin), Sen. Bob Jauch (D-Poplar) and Kori Oberle, Wisconsin
Educational Communications Board. The conference is hosted by Senate
Majority Leader William Frist (R-Tenn.), Senate Minority Leader Tom
Daschle (D-S. Dakota), House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) and
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
The State Bar of Wisconsin is the mandatory professional association,
created by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, for attorneys who hold a law
license in Wisconsin. With more than 20,000 members, the State Bar aids
the courts in improving the administration of justice, provides
continuing legal education for its members to help them maintain their
expertise, and assists Wisconsin lawyers in carrying out community
service initiatives to educate the public about the legal system and the
value of lawyers.