INDIANAPOLIS – May 18, 2016 – A dozen civics, history and social studies teachers from across the country, including Patrick Chambers, a high school AP government teacher at Perry Meridian High School in Indianapolis, are heading to Washington, D.C., today to urge the U.S. Senate to hold a hearing and an up-or-down vote on President Barack Obama’s nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court – Merrick Garland, chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Chambers will attend a roundtable discussion at the White House with Obama administration officials about the importance of the confirmation process and the critical role educators play in informing students about the role of the Supreme Court. In April, Chambers joined a dozen teachers in sending a letter to the U.S. Senate advocating for a hearing and vote on the president’s nominee. Chambers was among the twelve teachers who wrote, in part:
As educators in the classroom, we believe it is our responsibility to help students learn about — and appreciate — the role citizens play in our democracy. We teach that being a good citizen requires cooperation, mutual respect, and the ability to compromise. When our students work in groups, they work together and do their jobs, even when they are not friends or have disagreements. Please help us teach our students the true meaning of democracy. Demonstrate that America’s leaders can put aside their differences to do their jobs. For the sake of the students who are the future of America, we urge you to hold a hearing and up-or-down vote on Judge Garland, the President’s nominee for the Supreme Court.
In addition, the National Education Association launched an online petition asking the American public to join educators and the growing chorus of voices urging the Senate to act on the president’s nominee. Educators believe Senate Republicans are playing a dangerous political game by refusing to consider President Obama’s nominee. They are urging the U.S. Senate to hold a hearing and a vote so that the court can continue to serve the American people at full strength.