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NEW VIDEO SHAKES UP STATUS QUO IN K-12 HISTORY TEXTBOOK, thanks to Catholic Textbook Project

DATE:    October 25, 2017

CONTACT:      Karen, media relations
                             949.370.1442  / karen@CatholicTextbookProject.com


Catholic Textbook Project, the premiere history textbook publishing company for Catholic schools, today released a compelling new video showcasing the tremendous need for engaging, vibrant and well-researched, accurate history textbooks. The four-minute video features interviews with Catholic educators at all levels, including renown history professor, Dr. James Hitchcock.

History textbooks published by Catholic Textbook Project are widely recognized for their signature, engaging narrative style and well-researched, accurate presentation of the people and events of the past.  Now used in schools in more than 90 dioceses nationwide and in English-speaking pockets around the world, the new video includes teachers who use the textbooks in schools located in vastly different regions.  Their message, however, is consistent.

“For most Catholic schools, money is tight and the competition for students is fierce,” says Van Hecke. “Those schools that use Catholic Textbook Project history textbooks are offering a superior education in history.  Once teachers adopt our history series we regularly receive feedback thanking us for producing these textbooks because even seasoned teachers tell us they are surprised and delighted to discover in our history textbooks facts that even they didn’t realize was missing. That’s always wonderful to hear!”

Recent federal testing shows students are far worse in knowledge of U.S. history than math. Only 12% of high school students are proficient in U.S. history.  In a popular world history textbook used by many public and even Catholic schools, a full chapter is devoted to Islam and Mohammed, but only a few sentences to Christianity and Christ. Recently McGraw-Hill apologized for calling the slave trade “immigration.”

“Today’s history books not only fail to engage students,” notes Van Hecke, “they favor political correctness over true history. That has a serious and far-reaching impact on our culture and our future.”

But that’s not the case with Catholic Textbook Project history textbooks.

“Teachers and students who use the Catholic Textbook Project series will be happy to know that in college its readers will know more about history than many of their professors as well as most of their classmates,” states Jeffrey Burton Russell, Ph.D., professor of history, emeritus, at University of California, Santa Barbara.

In a recent interview published by the Catholic Business Journal, Van Hecke discussed the origins of his non-profit textbook publishing company, its vision and challenges, what sets it apart from other textbook publishers, and why its first series—history textbooks for Catholic schools—is gaining fast traction among Catholic educators, bishops, parents and even non-Catholics.

“Instead of a dry recounting of events, dates, names and places found in a typical K-12 history textbook, users of Catholic Textbook Project’s textbooks read well-crafted, exciting stories of truth and virtue, human actions and decisions that render the past a living part of the present,” writes Joseph O’Brien, the journalist who interviewed Van Hecke. “Unawares, these textbooks prepare students to face the future well-anchored in a rich moral and intellectual formation and in an accurate understanding and appreciation for the men and women of past generations on whose shoulders we stand today—including Catholic religious orders, lay men and women whose choices significantly impacted the course of history—for better or worse.”

To learn more about Catholic Textbook Project’s history textbook series for grades 5-12, which is now used in Catholic schools in more than 90 dioceses nationwide, and in pockets of English-speaking schools worldwide, go to www.CatholicTextbookProject.com.


About Catholic Textbook Project.  Founded by a headmaster who was unable to find good history/social studies textbooks for his students, Michael Van Hecke, M.Ed., culled a select group of scholars, professors, educators, editors and award-winning book designers and launched Catholic Textbook Project (a 501c3 nonprofit). For more information or to explore the textbooks, or what others say about these textbooks, go to http://www.CatholicTextbookProject.com.