Resolution to Affirm Winthrop University’s Compliance with REACH Act Requirements Related to Instruction in the Founding Documents of the United States of America

WHEREAS Winthrop University’s baccalaureate degree and general education program have featured a Constitution Competency requirement for all graduating students for many years; and

WHEREAS Winthrop University’s faculty have articulated clear learning outcomes requiring all students to read in their entirety the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, select Federalist Papers, and other founding documents of our nation; and 

WHEREAS the South Carolina State Legislature passed and the Governor signed in April 2021 the REACH Act, to amend the South Carolina Code of Laws, 1976, section 59-29-130, addressing the duration of study of our Constitutional heritage at institutions of higher education; and

WHEREAS the REACH Act adds study of the Emancipation Proclamation and one or more founding documents central to the African American freedom struggle to its previous support for instruction related to our Constitutional heritage; and

WHEREAS Winthrop’s faculty and administrators have significant expertise in our founding documents and the African American freedom struggle and are updating course syllabi and catalog language to reflect the amendments in the REACH Act; and

WHEREAS the Commission on Higher Education will oversee the annual review of the compliance of South Carolina institutions of higher education with the REACH Act and has requested the Board of Trustees to confirm institutional compliance with the REACH Act; 

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Winthrop University Board of Trustees affirms that Winthrop University will be fully compliant with the updated requirements of the REACH Act; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Winthrop University will achieve compliance by the fall 2021 semester without adding credits to our baccalaureate degree requirements and without negative impact on our accreditation status or budget.

APPROVED, this 25th day of June 2021