By Richard Bammer
In an age of increasing technology, the value of handwriting has surfaced as a topic of debate in American academic circles. The overriding question is, does it matter anymore? After all, “keyboarding,” or touch typing, begins in second grade in many schools, and, a year later, third-graders begin to take all-computerized state standardized tests?
Perhaps not very much to some educators.
Case in point: In October, 2015, Carolyn Thomas, a digital education specialist at Fairmont Elementary in Vacaville, told The Reporter that teachers no longer teach cursive handwriting at the Marshall Road campus. I have been thinking about her statement ever since.
However, the Common Core State Standards, which most states have adopted, call for teaching legible writing in grades K-1 but not necessarily afterward. States are permitted to add an additional 15 percent of their own standards as they see fit. Several states, including California, Massachusetts, North Carolina and South Carolina, decided to make cursive instruction mandatory as part of their standards enhancements.