PA could become 19th state in country to mandate cursive writing in schools

16 February 2024- Seeking to ensure that all Pennsylvania school students learn how to write and read cursive, Rep. Dane Watro (R-Luzerne/Schuylkill) is the prime sponsor of legislation that would require cursive handwriting to be taught in the classroom. 

“In our increasingly digital world, cursive has fallen by the wayside. However, there are many compelling reasons for students to have at least a basic grasp of cursive writing,” said Watro. “Our nation’s founding documents, such as the Constitution and Declaration of Independence, are written in cursive. Many people sign their names in cursive, and it’s often needed to complete a business document.”

House Bill 1934 would mandate instruction in cursive handwriting or joined italics, as it is sometimes called, to be taught in the appropriate grade levels. Should the legislation become law, Pennsylvania would become the 19th state in the nation to legislate a requirement for basic instruction in cursive handwriting. 

Watro also noted that recent studies indicate learning cursive has many developmental benefits including increased hand-eye coordination, critical thinking and self-confidence. 

House Bill 1934 has been referred to the House Education Committee for consideration. 

The legislation was previously sponsored by former Rep. Joe Adams (R-Wayne/Pike) who resigned earlier this month for family health reasons.