Juneau Hosts Civics Education Institute in Helena

Monday, August 5, 2013
By Allyson Hagen

Juneau Hosts Civics Education Institute in Helena

Helena, MT – Educators from across the state will gather in Helena on August 5 and 6 for a Civics Education Institute at the Red Lion Colonial Inn. The two-day training will bring national and state experts together to highlight some of the best resources in civic education. Participants in the Institute will learn: how to use iCivics, the interactive web-based program founded by former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor; how to incorporate the role of Montana tribal governments in their lesson plans; and how they can engage students in community projects.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Denise Juneau said, "The health of our democracy depends on citizens being knowledgeable about how government works and becoming actively engaged in their communities. Civic education in our schools ensures that the students of today gain the knowledge and skills they need to become the informed citizens and effective leaders of tomorrow.”

A luncheon panel entitled, “Civic Learning and the Law,” will be moderated by Ted McConnell from the Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools. Panelists include: Montana Supreme Court Justice Mike McGrath, Assistant U.S. Attorney Danna Jackson and Jason Smith, State Director of Indian Affairs for Governor Steve Bullock.

WHO: Superintendent Denise Juneau, Ted McConnell, Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools, Montana Supreme Court Chief Justice Mike McGrath

WHEN: Monday, August 5, 9 am-9:20 am or 11:45 am-12:45 pm.

Media is invited to attend the conference opening with Supt. Juneau and Ted McConnell and the luncheon panel, Civic Learning and the Law.

WHERE: Red Lion Colonial Inn, 2301 Colonial Drive, Helena
Capitol Room (morning session), Executive Room (luncheon panel)

To download the agenda for the Civics Education Institute, go to:


Ted McConnell serves as Executive Director of the Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools (CMS), a coalition of over 60 national organizations committed to improving the quality and quantity of civic learning in our nation’s schools. Prior to joining the Campaign, McConnell directed the Campaign to Promote Civic Education, a fifty state effort to revitalize and strengthen civic education at the state and district levels.

McConnell has been involved in the political, governmental and non-profit sectors for over thirty five years. Prior positions include Congressional Affairs Assistant to the United States Secretary of Commerce; Assistant to the Chairman and Director of Marketing and Events for the Commission on the Bicentennial of the United States Constitution; Transition Assistant, 1980 Presidential Transition; and Deputy Director of the Citizens Division of the Republican National Committee.

iCivics: iCivics makes civic education relevant to students by providing interactive games and curricula where students are able to use twenty-first century skills such as critical thinking and problem solving .  Students learn about local, state, and federal governments and how citizens can advocate for changes in public policy.

Sponsors of the Civics Education Institute include: Elizabeth Baker, Justice, Montana Supreme Court, Paul Choan, Moulton Bellingham P.C., Edwards, Frickle, and Culver, Montana Justice Foundation, Montana Office of Public Instruction Indian Education Program, Montana Paralegal Association, Montana Trial Lawyers Association, New Lawyers Section of the State Bar, Carolyn Ostby, U.S. Magistrate Judge, P. Mars Scott P.C., State Bar of Montana, and Yellowstone County Bar Association 


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