Senate Bill No. 43
(By Senator Boley)
[Introduced January 12, 2000; referred to the Committee
A BILL to amend and reenact section nine, article two, chapter
eighteen of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine
hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to required courses
of instruction in high schools; requiring courses comprising
an additional credit of civics and economics for high school
seniors; and continuing existing criminal penalties for
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That section nine, article two, chapter eighteen of the code
of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as
amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 2. STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION.
§18-2-9. Required courses of instruction; violation and penalty.
(a) In all public, private, parochial and denominational
schools located within this state there shall be given prior to
the completion of the eighth grade at least one year of
instruction in the history of the state of West Virginia.
The schools shall require regular courses of instruction by the
completion of the twelfth grade in the history of the United
States, in civics, in the constitution of the United States, and
in the government of the state of West Virginia for the purpose
of teaching, fostering and perpetuating the ideals, principles
and spirit of political and economic democracy in America and
increasing the knowledge of the organization and machinery of the
government of the United States and of the state of West
Virginia. Beginning in the school year starting in the year two
thousand, all students in the twelfth grade are required to
complete an additional credit of civics and economics. The
credit shall be comprised of two one semester courses. One
course shall be in civics or government processes and one course
shall be in economics. The additional credit is in addition to
credit requirements existing on the first day of January, two
thousand. The state board of education shall, with the advice of the state superintendent of schools, prescribe the courses of
study covering these subjects for the public schools. It shall
be is the duty of the officials or boards having authority over
the respective private, parochial and denominational schools to
prescribe courses of study for the schools under their control
and supervision similar to those required for the public schools.
To further such study, every high school student eligible by age
for voter registration shall be afforded the opportunity to
register to vote pursuant to section twenty-two, article two,
chapter three of this code.
(b) The state board of education shall cause to be taught in
all of the public schools of this state the subject of health
education, including instruction in any of the grades six through
deemed considered appropriate by the county board, on:
(1) The prevention, transmission and spread of acquired immune
deficiency syndrome and other sexually transmitted diseases; and
(2) substance abuse, including the nature of alcoholic drinks and
narcotics, tobacco products, and other potentially harmful drugs,
with special instruction as to their effect upon the human system
and upon society in general. The course curriculum requirements
and materials for such the instruction shall be adopted by the state board by rule in consultation with the department division
An opportunity shall be afforded to the parent or guardian
of a child subject to instruction in the prevention, transmission
and spread of acquired immune deficiency syndrome and other
sexually transmitted diseases to examine the course curriculum
requirements and materials to be used in
such the instruction.
The parent or guardian may exempt such their child from
participation in such the instruction by giving notice to that
effect in writing to the school principal.
(c) Any person violating the provisions of this section
shall be is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof,
shall be fined not exceeding ten dollars for each violation, and
each week during which there is a violation shall constitute is
a separate offense. If the person so convicted occupy occupies
a position in connection with the public schools, that person
shall is automatically be removed from such his or her position
and shall be is ineligible for reappointment to that or a similar
position for the period of one year.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require an additional
credit of civics and economics courses for high school seniors.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken
from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language
that would be added.