Partnership formed to address education crisis

Lauren Williams's picture
Monday, August 5, 2013

The Joe Foss Institute (JFI) today announced a partnership with The Dreyfuss Initiative (TDI) and the LeftRightLeftRightForward March! initiative (LRLRFM!) to promote the importance of civics education in schools across the country.

Under the collaboration, these non-profit organizations will work together to create new and innovative educational resources and utilize JFI's national network of teachers and Veteran volunteers to deliver the educational content into classrooms across the country while garnering public support and awareness for the effort.  Currently, JFI reaches more than 200,000 students each year in classrooms nationwide.

The concept for the partnership was developed out of concern for the "perfect storm" in education occurring today in America.  Schools have shifted away from civics and history to focus more on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).  This changing emphasis, when coupled with new legislation and standardized testing with funding tied to proficiency, has created what Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor describes as the "Quiet Crisis" in education. JFI, TDI, and LRLRFM! are stepping into this educational gap by working together to bring civics and history back into our country's schools.  


The Joe Foss Institute (JFI) was founded in 2001 by Medal of Honor recipient Joe Foss and his wife "didi."  The Institute steps into the civics educational gap through its Veterans Inspiring Patriotism (VIP) program, educational resources, and college scholarship program.  The goal of the Institute is to promote the importance of civics in the classroom so that our students are informed of their rights and responsibilities and graduate as engaged citizens ready to become tomorrow's leaders.  To date, JFI programs have served more than 1.2 million students across the country.  (

The Dreyfuss Initiative (TDI) was founded by education activist and Academy-award winning actor Richard Dreyfuss.  With a firm belief that the free public education system was developed in America for the express purpose of raising good citizens who would be prepared to run the nation when their time came; TDI believes that we cannot reliably count on solutions to current political problems until one knows in our DNA the values that created a revolutionary nation, one that changed the basic values of governance that had existed for 6000 years, including all citizens in the freedoms formerly held only by aristocracy.  A governance that included for the first time in all of history a government of, by and for the people; and that civic education is the founding mandate of public education, the one inarguable training for all.  TDI's mission is to develop K-12 curriculum designed to teach our children how to run the country with common sense and realism. (

The LeftRightLeftRightForwardMarch! (LRLRFM!) initiative was created by philanthropist Foster Friess to unite people of different political viewpoints on projects that serve the common good.  Founded after witnessing a growing culture of hostility between those with opposing ideas in politics, the initiative seeks to restore civil discourse between politically diverse Americans by promoting partnerships on projects that all Americans regardless of political leanings can embrace.  (