Cursive handwriting bill passes House

Posted April 4, 2013

— State House lawmakers voted unanimously Thursday to require elementary school students to be taught cursive handwriting and to memorize multiplication tables.

Rep. Pat Hurley, R-Randolph, is the sponsor of House Bill 146, known as the "Back to Basics" bill. She said she filed the proposal after receiving a bunch of printed thank-you notes from a local fourth-grade class that visited her in Raleigh. 

Hurley said local school officials told her it's up to teachers to decide whether to teach students cursive and whether to require them to memorize multiplication tables.

Hurley said cursive writing is "a skill that’s needed in the larger world and is thought to be a requirement for a well-rounded educated person," adding that her research shows it helps students' motor skills and self-discipline.

Cursive also "increases ability to read cursive documents like the Bill of Rights," she said, and teaches students to sign their names.

Confessing her love of antiques and old letters, Hurley said students who don't learn cursive "are missing out."

"I love digital and electronics," she said, "but I feel that our students still need the other."

The Department of Public Instruction has said the new requirements can be accommodated within the current Common Core Curriculum and should not add any additional cost. 

The measure passed 107-0. It now goes to the state Senate.


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  • storminnorman Apr 12, 2013

    People, please! Did you clowns not notice that the bill passed 107-0? Therefore I'm sure that some of your Democrat friends in the legislature voted yes too, or is the legislature in NC completely made up of Republicans? This is not a party issue it is a common sense issue. Cursive doesn't bother me as much but the multiplication tables absolutely have to be taught to our kids. I'm 31 years old, and work in a career not even close to something mathematical and I use the multiplication tables everyday. It is a must! Our kids can't spell anymore, can't put together a complete sentence, now we have to protect the multiplication tables. Good grief! The reason our kids are so unsuccessful now is because of the silly NCLB act and all the accommodations that these kids receive. If you can't do it, let's not teach you how to do it, let's give you an excuse why you can't. This isn't going to cost a dime to make it mandatory to teach cursive or multiplication. So move on!

  • minnie920 Apr 12, 2013

    The Representative obviously does not have enough to keep her occupied. Redraw the districts and give her a busy one.

  • ajpettitt Apr 12, 2013

    The modern technology age is here, but we can be without all these conveniences if the energy grid is overloaded or we have a few back to back major storms, and remember a computer or calculator is only as smart as the people feeding it. garbage in make for garbage out.

    Tell me what decent high paying job you can find in this world which does not require knowing simple reading, writing and math skills, if you find one let the world know we all what that job.

  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Apr 11, 2013

    Can't believe this was ever left up to a teacher to decide. sigh

  • jimsyjams Apr 10, 2013

    This shouldn't just be cursive writing.... did you know that on a legal document in NC it doesn't matter if the signature is with cursive or not?

  • ScientiaVinces Apr 8, 2013

    This clears things up significantly! Before, it seemed that the NC™ Republican Clown Show© was trying to turn back time to the 1950s. But now we can see what they and their supporters are longing for are the _1850s_.

  • valetman0 Apr 6, 2013

    The Bill of Rights was written in Copperplate, not Cursive. They're different fonts, like Courier and Times New Roman. This is what happens when NC's legislature takes a break from establishing an official state religion. Teach yourselves Copperplate, so you can read the First Amendment.

  • fkhaywood Apr 5, 2013

    Do away with cursive writing and you will be forcing people to sign documents, checks, etc. with an 'X', yes, there will still be a need for this in a digital age. Lots of people out there still don't use or trust a computer, some elderly think a computer will 'blow up" if they hit the wrong button! I am in my late 60's and use a computer as much as I can, paying bills, ordering merchandise from the internet, but there are still times when I have to sign a document to make it legal.

  • carolinarox Apr 5, 2013

    For those in favor of cursive writing: What learning would you cut to make time for this time-intensive training? themacs

    Why should any learning be cut? I learned cursive 40 years ago beginning in 3rd grade (when I also had to memorize multiplication tables) and it continued through 6th grade, I believe. In addition to being a rather unique identifier, it wasn't that long ago that the ability to write put you in a better class in society than those who could only "make their mark." And to the person who knows the "gozintas" better than multiplication, you can't divide until you know how to multiply.

  • soyousay Apr 5, 2013

    She said she filed the proposal after receiving a bunch of printed thank-you notes from a local fourth-grade class that visited her in Raleigh. ..

    and now they have passed an unfnded mandate. what will have to be diminshed for this insanity