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Virginia Council on Indians: Resources,

Virginia Council on Indians

The Virginia Council on Indians (VCI) is a state advisory board to the Governor and the General Assembly. Some Council activities include conducting research, making recommendations regarding issues such as tribal recognition, and promoting education about Virginia's Indian tribes. This resource page provides links to such websites as the American Indian Studies department at Virginia Tech, as well as pdf downloads of teaching materials. Don't miss the rest of the VCI website, where there's information about Native Americans in Virginia, tracing your genealogy, and state recognition of Indian tribes. This website is also a great resource for anyone looking for an example of the implementation of public policy.

Public Education: What is the State’s Responsibility ,

Deborah Sprenger

Public education remains one of the primary responsibilities shared between state and local government. The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Virginia requires the General Assembly to provide a system of free public schools. That provision has been…

Military Recruiting on Campus: Amendment to the "No Child Left Behind Act",

U.S. Senate

The federal "No Child Left Behind" Act was created to ensure equal quality of education for all students. One frequent problem in education is the "achievement gap" between students from different backgrounds. Some examples of this include: low…

What are Initiatives and Referendums?,

Rob Campbell

Currently, 24 states have some form of initiative and referendum process. Citizens can use the ballot initiative process to implement laws on their own; conversely, a referendum places an existing law to a popular vote. In this activity, students…

Project Vote Smart,

Project Vote Smart

Project Vote Smart aims to provide voters with information about key election issues, biographical information about candidates, and voting records. One of its best properties is the level of detail given to state and local elections. Visitors can search by zip code to find information about candidates in their area, go directly to Virginia’s profile page, or even find links to local election offices. Find out who your representatives are, how their votes are affecting your life, and how you can vote in your area.

Budget Hero Game,

American Public Media

Budget Hero gives players an opportunity to try to manage the Federal budget by making budget decisions without breaking the bank. Players can choose up to three major issues to focus on, such as  national defense, health and wellness, energy independence, and efficient government. The game provides details about individual issues (such as funding for mass transit and other infrastructure), which can inform players about some of the major policy issues being dicussed right now. The game is aimed at the Federal budget, but some of the policy decisions affect state and local governments.

Public Agenda: Helping Americans Explore Today's Issues,

Public Agenda

This website provides a wealth of up-to-date coverage of current issues, from America's role in the international community to Social Security. A large section for educators includes resources for teachers, students, parents, and leaders. Topics such as the rising cost of college tuition are particularly relevant for those involved in education. While there are limited resources specifically aimed at Virginia, the broader issues covered by the website can easily be oriented to fit discussions about their specific application on the state and local level.

Summary of General Labor, Employment Law, & Health Insurance Issues,

Virginia General Assembly

This document summarizes key provisions related to health care, labor, and employment passed by the 2009 Virginia General Assembly. These provisions do not become law unless also signed by the Governor. Passed legislation varies from things like…

Developments in the Global Economy and Implications for the United States,

Timothy F. Geithner

Federal Reserve Chairman Timothy Geithner discusses the interaction between the U.S. and the global economy. One issue he discusses is the way that the U.S. dollar is used as a standard for other currencies around the globe. Speaking in 2006,…

What is the Real Cost of Buying a House and Car?,

Linda Long

Tax rates differ for citizens in Virginia, depending on where one lives. In addition, a local government may choose to spend collected tax money differently than another local government in the Commonwealth. In this activity, students simulate the…