4:36 pm
Wed January 23, 2013

Indiana Senate Panel Passes Cursive Writing Bill

A bill that would require Indiana’s elementary schools to teach cursive writing is on its way to the floor of the state Senate.

The chamber’s Education and Career Development Committee voted 7-4 today to advance the measure sponsored by Republican Jean Leising.

Leising says she’s concerned about a new state education department policy that makes the teaching of cursive writing optional but requires that students become proficient in keyboard use.

Some committee members like Republican Carlin Yoder say they’re hesitant to get involved in local curriculum issues, but Yoder voted yes anyway.

"The worst grades I ever got were in handwriting and the trouble I got in every time because of that still sticks with me," Yoder said.

"I’m not sure why we’re weighing in on this, but I will help Sen. Leising out today and vote yes to allow it to get on the floor."

Leising cites education experts who say cursive writing is a critical part of cognitive development, and a skill that will be needed later in life.    A similar bill won Senate approval last year but died in the House.