Here at the Department of Education, autumn is more than back to school. In addition to all the back to school activities, we also host significant events each year tied to our nation’s history. Veterans Day is one of them and is observed at the Department each year close to November 11.
To comply with the law that requires all schools that receive federal funding and all federal agencies to observe Constitution Day, September 17, here at the Department of Education, we focused on the Constitutional issues that arose during World War I. We chose to focus on World War I because 2017 marks the centennial of the U.S. entry into that war.
In remembrance of the signing of the U.S. Constitution, and in recognition of the Americans who strive to uphold the duties and responsibilities of citizenship, including Federal employees, the Congress enacted a law on December 8, 2004, that requires educational institutions receiving Federal funding to hold an educational program for their students pertaining to the United States Constitution on September 17 of each year, except when it falls on a weekend. Congress also designated September 17 as “Constitution Day and Citizenship Day,” commemorating the anniversary of the signing of the Constitution. Additionally, Federal agencies are required to provide information about the Constitution to their employees to commemorate that day.
“Ask Not What Your Country Can Do For You – Ask What You Can Do For Your Country.” – President John F. Kennedy, 1961
This year marks the 100-year anniversary of the birth of one of the most celebrated presidents in our nation’s history, John F. Kennedy. To commemorate the occasion, the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation has launched a year-long initiative to honor his legacy by encouraging youth to get more involved in their communities, and to better understand how government works.