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Cursive Instruction

Cursive Instruction Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

FAQs to support Assembly Bill (AB) 446 (2023) External link opens in new window or tab. and California state law relating to the inclusion of instruction in cursive in the appropriate grade levels for grades one through six, inclusive.

  1. What does AB 446 mean for cursive instruction starting January 1, 2024?

    1. California Education Code Section 51210(a) has been amended, as indicated in bold text, as follows: “The adopted course of study for grades 1 to 6, inclusive, shall include instruction, beginning in grade 1 and continuing through grade 6, in the following areas of study: (1) English, including knowledge of, and appreciation for, literature and the language, as well as the skills of speaking, reading, listening, spelling, handwriting, including instruction in cursive or joined italics in the appropriate grade levels, and composition.”

  2. Which teachers—and which grade levels—does AB 446 affect?

    1. Local educational agencies determine the appropriate grade levels during grades one through six in which to implement instruction in cursive or joined italics.

  3. Cursive instruction is in the California Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts/Literacy (CA CCSS for ELA/Literacy) (PDF). Have the standards changed?

    1. No. AB 446 does not constitute a change in standards. The CA CCSS for ELA/Literacy contains outcomes related to cursive or joined italics for grades three and four.

      • Language Standards kindergarten through grade five (K–5), 3.1j: Write legibly in cursive or joined italics, allowing margins and correct spacing between letters in a word and words in a sentence.

      • Language Standards K–5, 4.1h: Write fluidly and legibly in cursive or joined italics.

  4. Is there additional guidance to support teachers implementing handwriting instruction in cursive or joined italics?

    1. The state’s guidance for the implementation of the CA CCSS for ELA/Literacy are outlined in the 2014 English Language Arts/English Language Development Framework, which provides support for the implementation of handwriting standards for grades three and four in the 2–3 and 4–5 grade-span chapters in the framework. For more information about instructional materials approved by the State Board of Education, visit the 2015 ELA/ELD Adoption web page.
Questions:   Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division | CFIRD@cde.ca.gov | 916-319-0881
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, February 21, 2024
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