A r c h i v e d  I n f o r m a t i o n


``(a) Program Established.--The Secretary is authorized to carry out a program of awarding grants and contracts to assist State and local educational agencies and other public and private nonprofit agencies, organizations, and institutions to enhance--
``(1) attainment by students of challenging State content standards and challenging State student performance standards in civics, government, and the law; and
``(2) attainment by the Nation of the third and the sixth National Education Goals.
``(b) Authorized Activities.--Assistance under this section may support new and ongoing programs in elementary and secondary schools that provide for--
``(1) the development and implementation of curricular programs that enhance student understanding of--
``(A) the values and principles which underlie, and the institutions and processes which comprise, our Nation's system of government;
``(B) the role of law in our constitutional democracy, including activities to promote--
``(i) legal literacy;
``(ii) a dedication by students to the use of nonviolent means of conflict resolution such as arbitration, mediation, negotiation, trials, and appellate hearings; and
``(iii) respect for cultural diversity and acceptance of cultural differences; and
``(C) the rights and responsibilities of citizenship;
``(2) professional development for teachers, including preservice and inservice training;
``(3) outside-the-classroom learning experiences for students, including community service activities;
``(4) the active participation of community leaders, from the public and private sectors, in the schools; and
``(5) the provision of technical assistance to State and local educational agencies and other institutions and organizations working to further the progress of the Nation in attaining the third and sixth National Education Goals regarding civics and government.
``(c) Applications, Peer Review and Priority.--
``(1) Submission of applications.--A State or local educational agency, other public or private nonprofit agency, organization, or institution that desires to receive a grant or enter into a contract under this section shall submit an application to the Secretary at such time, in such manner, and containing or accompanied by such information as the Secretary may reasonably require.
``(2) Peer review.--
``(A) The Secretary shall convene a panel of individuals for purpose of reviewing and rating applications submitted under paragraph (1).
``(B) Such individuals shall have experience with education programs in civics, government, and the law.
``(3) Priority.--In awarding grants or awarding contracts under this section, the Secretary shall give priority consideration to applications which propose the operation of statewide programs.
``(d) Duration of Grants and Exception.--
``(1) Duration.--Except as provided in paragraph (2), the Secretary shall award grants and contracts under this section for periods of two or three years.
``(2) Exception.--The Secretary may award a grant or a contract under this section for a period of less than 2 years if the Secretary determines that special circumstances exist which warrant a 1-year grant or contract award.