Scholastic News Online

Scholastic News Online is a free resource with breaking news and highlights from the print magazine.

Available for grades 1-6, Scholastic News magazine brings high-interest current events and nonfiction to millions of classrooms each week.

Additionally, our subscribers have FREE access to Scholastic News Interactive, an exclusive online learning tool featuring digital editions, videos, interactive features, differentiated articles, and much more.

Elena Kagan in highschool, Kagan at confirmation hearings Left: In a playful high-school yearbook photo, Elena Kagan wears a judge's robe and and holds a gavel. (Hunter High School, Ellen Purtell/AP Images) Right: Kagan at Senate confirmation hearings. (Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg/Getty Images)

Meet the Newest Supreme Court Justice

Elena Kagan confirmed by the Senate, 63-37

By Laura Leigh Davidson | August 6 , 2010
1977 yearbook photo of Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. Kagan attended Hunter College High School in New York City (Photo: NewsCom) <br />
1977 yearbook photo of Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. Kagan attended Hunter College High School in New York City (Photo: NewsCom)

Elena Kagan has reached a lifelong goal: becoming a Justice on the United States Supreme Court. The U.S. Senate confirmed Kagan on Thursday by a vote of 63-37. She replaces Justice John Paul Stevens, who retired in June.

Kagan will take a sacred oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States on Saturday at a swearing-in ceremony. The new Justice will bring the number of women sitting on the nation's highest court to three. Kagan joins Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor—all three New Yorkers.

Kagan is the fourth woman in history to sit on the Supreme Court. Justice Sandra Day O'Connor was the first female Justice. She was appointed by President Ronald Reagan and served from 1981 to 2006.

Kagan, who is 50 years old, is the second Justice appointed by President Barack Obama. (He appointed Justice Sotomayor in 2009.) Obama told reporters on Thursday that Kagan will make an "outstanding Justice who understands that her rulings affect people." He also noted that the addition of another woman to the Supreme Court marks a sign of progress for the country.

Obama and Kagan will celebrate her confirmation with a ceremony at the White House today.

Her Story

Kagan has spent most of her adult life working with the law. She served in President Clinton's administration as a legal adviser, was the head of Harvard Law School, and until her confirmation Thursday, was the U.S. Solicitor General—one of the most powerful lawyers in the federal government.

Kagan was born in New York City. She grew up in an apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, the strong-willed, independent middle sister sandwiched between two brothers.

Kagan's mother was a public school teacher who taught fifth and sixth grades. Her father was a lawyer.
The new Justice once wore a judge's robe in a picture for her high-school yearbook. Now she'll be wearing real ones as she and the other eight Justices decide some of the most important legal cases in our country.


Get the latest on national and international events, movies, television, music, sports, and more from Scholastic News Online.

  • Scholastic Store
  • The Scholastic Store  
    Barack Obama: Our 44th President

    Barack Obama: Our 44th President

    by Beatrice Gormley

    President Barack Obama's early involvement with politics was inspired by his mother's interest in the controversial social issues of her times -- a passion that she passed on to her son. As the first African American editor of the Harvard Law Review, the first African American presidential nominee of a major political party, and eventually the first African American president of the United States, Barack Obama has consistently shattered barriers -- barriers that some people thought could never be overcome. However, life has not always been easy for President Obama. Born to a Kenyan father and an American mother, Barack grew up in Hawaii and Indonesia, where he faced discrimination and struggles with his own racial identity. Despite these obstacles, Barack persevered and had a successful political career before his historic win in the 2008 presidential election, with his daughters and wife, Michelle, standing firmly by his side. His election has energized a nation, and President Obama will continue to lead the charge for change over the next four years. This is the children's biography about the forty-fourth president of the United States. Containing up-to-the-minute information, including President Obama's November victory, this is essential reading for every young student of American history.

    $4.79 You save: 20%
    books;paperback books;paperbacks | Ages 9-12
    Add To Cart
    Barack Obama: Our 44th President
    Ages 9-12 $4.79
  • Scholastic Store
  • The Scholastic Store  
    Scholastic News: Meet President Barack Obama

    Scholastic News: Meet President Barack Obama

    by Laine Falk

    Part of Scholastic's News Series.

    $5.56 You save: 20%
    books;paperback books;reader - classroom | Ages 6-8
    Add To Cart
    Scholastic News: Meet President Barack Obama
    Ages 6-8 $5.56
Privacy Policy




Here's something interesting from