Press Release

Common Sense Society Launches Nationwide Education Initiative, American Civics Project

February 1, 2024

New CSS initiative to help K-12 educators cultivate citizen competency by making the moral case for the American story

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Civics literacy in America is on a dangerous decline. Only 14% of eighth graders scored “proficient” or above in history on the 2023 National Assessment of Educational Progress—the lowest score ever recorded in the test’s 30-year history. It’s clear that American youth are divorced from the foundations of our democracy.

American Civics Project (ACP), an education initiative of Common Sense Society, meets this critical need.

ACP comes alongside educators with resources to increase citizen competency and make the moral case for America’s free-market constitutional republic. Our unique approach emphasizes the history of human cooperation rather than a narrative of the strong oppressing the weak. We provide educators with free in-class lesson plans and corresponding self-paced professional development digital courses that culminate in P.D. points, ACP teacher certification, and access to a national network of civics educators. 

“As a longtime professor of economics, I’ve seen my fair share of traditional civics programming which either lacks a central idea entirely or promotes a divisive and unhelpful oppression narrative,” said CSS vice president for curriculum, Dr. David C. Rose. “American Civics Project is different. By emphasizing the role of human cooperation in developing fundamental aspects of American life—including free markets and free governments—we are empowering students to take ownership of their country’s future. I am grateful to play a role in supporting educators as they cultivate citizen competency in America.” 

“CSS has spent the last three years growing a network of over 17,500 civics-minded educators with whom we share American Civics Project resources,” said CSS senior vice president of education, Dr. Murray Bessette. “Today, the lives of approximately 350,000 students across all 50 states are impacted by teachers utilizing ACP lesson plans. With the launch of our new professional development digital courses, we now have the opportunity to support even more educators in their important work of cultivating the citizen competency of the next generation.”

Learn more about American Civics Project at

Common Sense Society (CSS) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational network with the mission to cultivate citizen competency across the United States and Europe through education and citizen engagement. CSS does not accept funding from governments or political parties.


For more information, about American Civics Project and Common Sense Society’s K-12 education initiatives, contact CSS director of educational innovation Petria Hoffpauir at

Stay Informed

Join our mailing list and be the first to receive exclusive news.

Thank you for signing up!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.