A multistate cursive comeback

A sampling of state Rep. Linden Bateman’s handwriting.

Rep. Linden Bateman convinced his legislative colleagues to keep cursive in Idaho classrooms.

And Idaho isn’t alone on this front.

At least seven states have passed legislation on cursive handwriting, according to the Associated Press. The list also includes California, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, North Carolina and Utah.

Bateman — and his penchant for writing letters in cursive — figures prominently in the story.

“Modern research indicates that more areas of the human brain are engaged when children use cursive handwriting than when they keyboard,” Bateman, R-Idaho Falls, told the AP. “We’re not thinking this through. It’s beyond belief to me that states have allowed cursive to slip from the standards.”

Bateman’s legislation called for the State Board of Education to craft a rule requiring the instruction of cursive in elementary school classrooms. The State Board gave the rule its initial approval in August. Any rule would have to go back to the Legislature; if either education committee approves a rule, it goes on the books.


Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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