This notice informs educational institutions receiving Federal funds from the U.S. Department of Education (Department) of a new statutory requirement for implementation of an educational program pertaining to the United States Constitution, on a date designated by statute as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day (``Constitution Day''). This Congressional initiative is authorized by Section 111 of Division J of Pub. L. 108-447, the ``Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2005,'' Dec. 8, 2004; 118 Stat. 2809, 3344-45 (Section 111). The Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement (Assistant Deputy Secretary) takes this action in order to implement this provision as it applies to educational institutions receiving Federal funding from the Department. Section 111(b) states ``[e]ach educational institution that receives Federal funds for a fiscal year shall hold an educational program on the United States Constitution on September 17 of such year for the students served by the educational institution.'' For purposes of the Department's implementation of this requirement, ``educational institutions'' includes but is not limited to ``local educational agencies'' and ``institutions of higher education'' receiving Federal funding from the Department. Section 111 applies to all educational institutions receiving Federal funding, not only those receiving Federal funding from the Department. However, the Department's authority only extends to those educational institutions receiving funding from the Department, and consequently the Department can only regulate with regard to those institutions. Section 111 requires that Constitution Day be held on September 17 of each year, commemorating the September 17, 1787 signing of the Constitution. However, when September 17 falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday, Constitution Day shall be held during the preceding or following week. Section 111 does not authorize funds to carry out this requirement, and Section 111(d) indicates that this section shall apply ``without fiscal year limitation.'' Accordingly, the Assistant Deputy Secretary intends that this notice pertain to this fiscal year and all subsequent years.
What is Constitution Day?