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This presentation will focus on the principles and structures of federalism, the distribution of powers between the federal and state governments, and the role of state governments in shaping public policy. Participants will explore the historical context of federalism in the United States and the evolution of federal-state relationship. They will explore the key features of the U.S. Constitution, including the 10th Amendment, which grants states their reserved powers, and the Supremacy Clause, which establishes the primacy of federal law. In addition to the constitutional foundations of federalism, participants will cover the practical implication of federalism for state governments and examine the importance state sovereignty plays in maintaining the Republic.
The American Founders were well-read and educated, and they extensively studied other forms of government, and the ideas and histories of the people in those societies. This session will examine the political theories, histories, and intellectual influences that helped shape the Founders’ views. The focus will be on Greece, Rome, the Judeo-Christian tradition, and the various Enlightenments as influences.
This session will focus on how the Federalists and Anti-Federalists debated in the political spectrum through civil discourse over ratification of the Constitution. Participants will have the opportunity to take a closer look at the historical timeline of the ratification process and important primary sources such as Brutus I, Cato and the Federalist Papers. Through analysis of primary sources, participants will discuss how the American Founders used civil discourse to debate and rebut the perceived strengths and weaknesses of the Constitution. Further, the discussion will include how the American citizens are the benefactors of the debates that created the Constitution.
The Declaration of Independence made a bold statement to the world; “All men are created equal.” The Founders called on the concepts of natural rights and law to be cornerstones of the American Republic. This session explores how every era that experienced an expansion of civil rights harkened back to the timeless principles of the Declaration of Independence. As the American experiment continues, each generation of “We the People” have utilized the amendment and law-making process to safeguard liberty and create a more perfect union.
This session is designed to provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of the original design and evolution of the United States Congress. The session will explore the foundational principles that guided the creation of the Congress and how those principles continue to shape the institution today. This session will examine key historical documents, including the Constitution, Federalist Papers, and other primary sources, to gain a deeper understanding of the intentions of the Founding Fathers for Congress. Participants will also examine the role of the representative in shaping American history and how its original intent has been applied over time.
This session will examine events beginning in 1763 and expanding through 1783 of American History. Participants will explore the timeline of events leading up to and carrying through the American Revolutionary War. We will examine the great personal risks and sacrifices that Patriots made in the support of the Revolution, and the values embodied by colonial Americans that were in support of the revolution. Through an exploration of primary sources and close readings, this session will illustrate the dynamics of the colonist’s mindset leading up to the Revolution and highlight the key influences and outcomes that were integral to the development of our nation and the securing of our fundamental right.
Florida is recognizing the need for proper and accurate history and civic education in the classroom. We are leading the nation in reigniting the focus on the importance of a virtuous, knowledgeable, and engaged citizenry. Participants will see the value the Founders placed on education and how they viewed knowledge as an obligation for an effective self-government. Participants will examine the concept of subsidiarity, where each level of government performs only those tasks that cannot be performed at a lower level. This session will also explore the vital role educators have in preserving an understanding of the absolute necessity of self-government to secure a free society.
Voting is often taught as one of the most important responsibilities of citizenship, yet many eligible citizens do not regularly participate in elections and therefore forfeit their privilege of choosing their representatives. This breakout session will focus on teaching the importance of voting at all levels of government. Participants will examine the impact of local elections, dive into the Electoral College and analyze the reasons why the Founders included the procedure in the Constitution. This session will also analyze voting trends to compare turnout between federal and local elections.
This session will consist of an overview and deep dive into The Declaration of Independence. The goal of this session is to teach (reinforce) the history and content of the Declaration correctly and consistently. Participants will analyze the views and work of the Committee of Five (e.g., Franklin, Jefferson, Adams, Livingston, Sherman).
This session will give participants a brief overview of the function of the Supreme Court as understood by the Founder’s in the U.S. Constitution. Participants will examine the role and authority of the Supreme Court as a governmental entity that interprets the law as written and does not make law. Included in this session will be a coupling of landmark cases that illustrate the significant impact the Supreme Court can have on the American Republic. This session will emphasize the principles of civil discourse to discuss sensitive or controversial issues arising in Supreme Court cases.
The purpose of this session is to examine the history of the Presidency from the Articles of Confederation to the present day. Through the study of past President’s, participants will understand the scope of authority, cornerstone precedents, and the structure of the Executive Branch as established by Article II of the Constitution. Participants will analyze the ways in which the presidency has expanded in both formal and informal functions from a very limited position to what is now referred to as the leader of the free world.
This session examines the First Amendment and the intertwining freedoms of conscience: Speech and Press. Participants will analyze the roots of free press and speech as a fundamental safeguard of individual liberties from the earliest points in American History. Participants will analyze the danger of political censorship and recognize the importance of a broad range of civic/political information, including social media, being available to inform the citizenry of a republican governmental system. This session will explain the importance of a free and independent press as a watchdog over the actions of the government and the role of the people to hold the media accountable for factual journalism. Participants will also focus on teaching students how to analyze media, identify bias and find credible sources of news.