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Texas elementary schools are set to reintroduce cursive writing, a style wherein letters are connected together.
Based on the revised Texas Education Code, cursive writing will be part of the elementary school curriculum starting September 2019. The state’s new education code requires that students learn and practice cursive writing starting from the second grade.
Texas is the 18th and latest state in America to revive cursive writing. This move is the lawmakers’ response to complaints about kids’ illegible handwriting. The state also hopes to fix the current curriculum, which focuses more on teaching students how to use a keyboard instead of how to write by hand.
Marty Rowley, a Texas school board member, explained the importance of incorporating cursive writing in the school curriculum. He said that studying cursive improves children’s cognitive abilities as well as their spelling and reading skills. More importantly, learning cursive will enable children to read several historical documents in the United States, which are in cursive handwriting.
Despite the benefits, however, some members of the academe are not fully convinced that learning cursive writing is necessary. An assistant professor from the University of Southern California believes that teaching how to use a keyboard will be more advantageous than teaching how to write in cursive. One professor from Oberlin College also thinks that learning cursive should be optional for students.
A University of Texas at Austin professor agrees that learning cursive is beneficial but that it can also be challenging. For one, learning cursive will lessen the time for students to study other subjects because there is a limited time in school daily.