Our Current Issues blog helps teachers connect news stories to their classrooms and students. Teaching the news is time-consuming and complicated; by the time you are able to find and process important issues and identify how to teach them, they are old news. This blog will be updated weekly, with links to classroom-ready news items, relevant context, and suggested discussion questions for teachers.
Videos | November 23, 2021
During this #CloseUpConversations webinar, sponsored by Johnson and Johnson, we discuss internships and career pathways that drive policy-making on Capitol Hill.
Post | November 22, 2021
On November 15th, President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). The bill represents the culmination of months of negotiations between House Democrats and Republicans as well as within the two parties. The goal of the bill is to significantly revitalize and modernize American infrastructure – the various systems, equipment, and structures that […]
Post | November 9, 2021
In September 2021, a bipartisan group of senators and representatives reintroduced the Truth and Healing Commission on Indian Boarding School Policies in the United States Act, which would establish a commission to “investigate, document, and acknowledge past injustices of the federal government’s Indian Boarding School Policies.”1 The commission would use its findings to recommend actions […]
Post | November 4, 2021
Part 2: The Current Debate Facing the U.S. Supreme Court For more information about the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978 and the history of its enactment, please read part one of this series. Brackeen v. Haaland is a complex case that challenges the constitutionality of the ICWA. In the opinion of some, the […]
Post | October 27, 2021
The case of Brackeen v. Haaland is currently facing the U.S. Supreme Court. The case calls into question the constitutionality of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) of 1978. The two major questions in the case are: (1) Is the ICWA unconstitutional on the basis of racial discrimination because of its favoring of Native families […]
Videos | October 14, 2021
During this Close Up Conversations webinar, Close Up’s, Joe Geraghty discusses the Supreme Court with guest speaker Steven Schwinn, professor of law at the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law.
Post | October 12, 2021
Last week, whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former project manager for Facebook’s Civic Integrity team, testified before Congress and criticized the social media company as a dangerous, unchecked force that was “buying its profits with our safety.”1 Haugen faulted the senior leadership at Facebook for identifying safety risks yet refusing to make the necessary changes to […]
Post | October 5, 2021
The Supreme Court begins its new term on the first Monday in October, a tradition that dates back to 1917.1 This year, that meant yesterday, Monday, October 4. In the term ahead, the Court is set to take up many key constitutional and legal issues. To explore those issues, Close Up is offering a free […]
Post | September 29, 2021
In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court declined to review a new Texas law (S.B. 8) restricting abortion access in the state after six weeks of pregnancy. Under the provisions of the law, women in Texas are legally prohibited from receiving an abortion, doctors are prohibited from performing an abortion, and third parties (such as […]