Leaders F (0%)
Groups F (0%)
Events F (0%)
History F (0%)
Opposition F (0%)
Tactics F (0%)
Content F (0%)

Grade levels F (0%)
Current events F (0%)
Civics F (0%)
Other movements F (0%)
Context F (0%)

GRADE F means Vermont includes none or less than 20% of the recommended content and should significantly revise its standards.

Survey of Standards and Frameworks
Vermont’s Framework of Standards and Learning Opportunities (last revised in 2000) provides requirements for teaching the civil rights movement. In 2004, Vermont’s State Board of Education produced a supplemental document, Grade Expectations for Vermont’s Framework of Standards and Learning Opportunities. This document identifies Grade Cluster Expectations (GCEs), described as “more specific statements of the Vermont standards.”

The introduction to the GCEs explains, “‘E.g.s’ are examples (not requirements or limited sets) of student demonstration or further clarification of a GCE.”

Elementary and Middle School
Martin Luther King Jr. is included in the state’s history and social sciences standards setting out “how democratic values came to be and how people, (e.g., Washington, Lincoln, King) events (e.g., 4th of July, Memorial Day, Labor Day) and symbols (e.g., flags, eagles) have exemplified them.” The framework does not mention the civil rights movement.

Grade 6-8: The social studies GCEs mention the civil rights movement once as non-required content where students should “connect the past with the present” by “[i]nvestigating how events, people, and ideas have shaped the United States and/or the world; and hypothesizing how different influences could have led to different consequences (e.g., How did the civil rights movement change the United States, and how might the United States be different if it had never happened?).”

High School
Vermont does not require study of the civil rights movement in high school, although a few of the GCEs have suggested content related to the movement. The state asks students to “act as citizens by [a]nalyzing and evaluating changes in the interpretation of rights and responsibilities of citizenship over time (e.g., changes in voting age, changes in voting rights for women and African Americans).” Later, the Ku Klux Klan is included as a suggestion for analyzing subcultures (along with “Goths” and “Hippies”). A few additional CGEs elsewhere in the Civics, Government and Society strand touch on issues of race, but none are directly related to the civil rights movement.

Additional Documents
The Vermont Department of Education’s website offers several pages of annotated resources in support of Black History month, several of which deal with the civil rights movement.

Vermont’s standards and frameworks fail to set forth explicit requirements to learn about the civil rights movement.