Education News in Brief

Retired Justice, Revealing Dementia, Steps Away From Civics Efforts

By Mark Walsh — October 30, 2018 1 min read

Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor revealed last week that she has been diagnosed with dementia and would be stepping aside from public life, including as leader of iCivics, the organization she founded to improve civic education for the nation’s students.

O’Connor, 88, stepped down from the court in 2006. Upon her retirement, she occasionally served as a visiting federal appeals court judge and spoke out on causes such as bringing an end to popular election of state judges. But her true passion became improving civics.

Her efforts led to the 2009 creation of iCivics, a nonprofit that promotes learning about government through online games.

In a letter to the public, O’Connor called for efforts to improve civics education to move to the next level. To that end, a new organization is being created, called CivXNow.org, that will focus on making civics a greater priority in schools.

A version of this article appeared in the October 31, 2018 edition of Education Week as Retired Justice, Revealing Dementia, Steps Away From Civics Efforts