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Join with AAG to Support Geography Education

ESEA Reauthorization Heating Up:  AAG Letter to Senator Alexander

On January 30, AAG Executive Director Doug Richardson sent a letter to Senator Lamar Alexander, Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, assering the importance of federal support for K-12 geography education.  The letter references the resolution described below.


THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION developed by the Association of American Geographers (AAG) proposes the advancement of geography education with three major recommendations. This resolution has been endorsed by U.S. Secretaries of State and Defense, many governors, major national organizations and corporations, and dozens of state geographic alliances and other groups. See the following page for a partial listing of these endorsers. We strongly urge adoption of the key goals of this resolution.


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Download the AAG Resolution Supporting K-12 Geography Education


AAG Resolution Supporting K–12 Geography Education

WHEREAS, Congress is scheduled to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), commonly known as “No Child Left Behind,” for the first time in almost a decade;

WHEREAS, geography is one of ten “core academic subjects” identified in the ESEA for which specific funding allocations and implementing programs are proposed to further its teaching at the K‐12 level;

WHEREAS, geography education is central to preparing students to be informed citizens of the United States and economically competitive in a rapidly globalizing world;

WHEREAS, geotechnologies, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), GPS, photogrammetry, surveying, mapping, and remote sensing, have been identified by the U.S. Department of Labor as one of the three most important emerging and evolving fields, with job opportunities growing and diversifying rapidly, creating substantial workforce growth as these technologies prove their value in ever more areas;

WHEREAS, employers in all sectors, including private companies, government agencies, and non‐governmental organizations (NGOs) have indicated that there is a pressing need for more students graduating today with the geographic science and geospatial skills needed to support a rapidly growing field;


Urges the Obama Administration to include geography and geospatial education in its Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and ESEA Blueprint for Reform proposals;

Urges Congress to include authorizations and appropriations for geography education consistent with other core academic subjects for K‐12, as part of a reauthorized ESEA; and

Urges Congress to enhance geography teacher training by passing legislation such as the Teaching Geography is Fundamental Act.

See Who Has Endorsed the AAG Resolution to Support Geography Education


See Who Has Endorsed the AAG Resolution to Support Geography Education

“During my time as Secretary of State, I witnessed firsthand how important it was that Americans understood geography and the world around them. Since then, as countries have become even more interconnected, that need has grown. As a result,  I support the efforts by the AAG to promote geography education in our schools, and I encourage the White House and Congress to do the same.”

James A. Baker III
U.S. Secretary of State

“Geography played a leading role in nearly every policy decision I was involved in as Secretary of State.  Young Americans with an understanding of peoples, places, and cultures have a clear advantage in today’s rapidly-changing global economy and I am encouraged that the AAG is working with Congress and the Administration to build support for geography education at the K-12 level.”

Madeleine Albright
U.S. Secretary of State