Kansas BOE recommends cursive taught in schools

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Wichita, Kan. -- Kansas elementary and high school students have slipped with test scores this year.

The pressure to stay ahead of the curve can be taxing, said Linda Bland, a third-grade teacher at Beech Elementary School in Wichita.

"Math and reading are the major ones, but now science is becoming important," she said. "Cursive isn't required, so it's easy to get missed."

Yet, Tuesday morning, the Kansas Board of Education approved new handwriting standards for public schools. Students are recommended to learn to write cursive in third grade, and by fifth grade, they are expected to write cursive legibly. The standards are just a suggestion. Each district can decide how they will address cursive handwriting in the classroom.

"It really helps connect your brain -- the left side to the right side," she said. "It really stimulates kids to read and write more because when they're writing in cursive, you have a continuity. It's real fluid."

Tuesday afternoon, Bland focused on teacher her students writing the word "flower" in cursive.

Students say it can be tough to learn, but they are anxious to master their handwriting.

"I think it's important to learn cursive because there are a lot of important things that if you ever needed to read them," said student Mallory Nesbitt. "They'd probably be written in cursive, which is probably why you need to learn how to write cursive and learn how to read cursive the most."

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