Background and Context
These educational resources will help students develop a thorough understanding of Foreign Policy and make connections between historical events, current conversations, and current policy proposals surrounding the issue. This section includes all of the context and content previously included in Close Up’s public policy chapters.
Current Issue Debates
Current Issue Debates are framed by a central question and followed by historical context, an overview of both sides of the topic, and discussion questions to facilitate deliberation in the classroom.
Videos from Policy Makers
Brought to you by ASP HOMEROOM, through a collaboration between Close Up Foundation and A Starting Point, these supplemental videos are an introduction to policy areas that provide an opportunity for students to hear different perspectives directly from lawmakers.
These ready-to-use lesson plans can be utilized in conjunction with any of our resources to enhance the quality of student discourse in the classroom. Our supplemental Civic Readiness Guide provides a recommended lesson plan sequence for using our Current Issues resources.
Post | May 25, 2023
On April 15, fighting broke out in Sudan between the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF), the country’s national army, and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), a paramilitary group. The RSF is the largest paramilitary group in Africa, created in 2013 out of the Janjaweed militias that have been accused of war crimes and genocide in Darfur, […]
Post | March 31, 2023
On March 23, 2023, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce held a hearing as part of an ongoing review of TikTok and its connections to the Chinese government. TikTok CEO Shou Chew was the focus of the hearing and took questions from members of Congress on a wide range of topics, including the ways […]
Post | March 8, 2023
On February 18, the Carter Center released a statement saying that former President Jimmy Carter had opted to spend “his remaining time at home” following a number of hospital stays and declining health.1 News of the 98-year-old former president’s condition has brought an outpouring of support and renewed attention to his life and legacy as […]
Post | September 30, 2022
In recent days, Iran has been gripped by a series of mass protests that have gained international attention. The protests, largely led by women, are somewhat unprecedented. While both protest and women’s participation in protest in Iran are not new, the protests of the past two weeks are remarkable as the first of such scale […]
Post | March 10, 2022
On March 1, 2022, President Joe Biden delivered his first State of the Union address. He hit on several major topics that have impacted the nation over the last year. This post will focus on the president’s discussion of the most recent and pressing global issue: the Russian invasion of Ukraine. READ MORE: The Russian […]
Post | March 1, 2022
On January 26, we posted about the deteriorating situation in Ukraine. Since then, Russia has invaded Ukraine and surrounded the capital, Kyiv. More than half a million refugees have fled the country and at least 136 civilians, including 13 children, have been killed.1 What Has Happened Since Then? February 21: The Russian government recognizes the […]
Post | January 26, 2022
President Joe Biden has ordered the Pentagon to put 8,500 U.S. troops on heightened alert for a possible deployment to Europe.1 And the State Department has told the families of U.S. diplomats in Ukraine to leave the country as the possibility of a Russian invasion increases.2 So, what is going on? Background on Ukraine Ukraine […]
Post | January 18, 2022
It’s official: 2021 was either the fifth or sixth hottest year on record, depending on who you ask. On January 13, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued reports saying that 2021 was the sixth hottest year ever recorded, going back to when record-keeping began in 1880.1 Earlier in the week, the […]