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April 03, 2017

Who Makes Democratic Change?

We need a model of making school changes based on citizens first, not government first. There are many precedents.

March 28, 2017

Empowering Students: When the Last Become First

In learning civic skills and taking public action through the citizen politics approach, students, often on the margins, change expectations and challenge school cultures. They also illustrate the power of "a different kind of politics" beyond the Manichean mindset.

March 23, 2017

Our Democracy Is Weak Now, Let's Fight for It in Schools

The forms of democracy are weak now. Students, families, and teachers should fight for it, argues Deborah Meier.

March 21, 2017

Repairers of the Breach

In a time of civic unravelling especially along partisan lines, how can we add a strong emphasis (and assessment dimension) on "civic repair" to every issue and organizing effort?

March 10, 2017

The Importance of Community: Connecting Schools and Neighborhoods

Now, more than ever, young people must see themselves and their communities as the makers of history, writes Deborah Meier.

February 21, 2017

Beyond 'Civics' Vs. 'Citizenship': Possibilities for Common Ground

The recent Making Citizens report is mistaken about the youth civic education initiative Public Achievement -- it reflects itself the mobilizing, good versus evil approach which has come to dominate public life in our time, the approach to politics it also decries. The debate has also illuminated possible common ground to integrate civics and citizenship education and move beyond binary thinking.

February 17, 2017

Keeping Democracy Alive Requires Practice

Democratic practices in schools can help prepare the young for adulthood, writes Deborah Meier.

February 09, 2017

Beyond Polarization: Education for Civic Repair

It is an ineluctable dynamic that when one polarizes, one purifies. This means eliminating the complexity of "the other side" that one sees as the enemy. In my view this is a serious problem of the National Association of Scholars report, "Making Citizens." It collapses the vast diversity of the civic engagement movement into a left wing conspiracy undertaken with stealth and subterfuge. This is a caricature. Nonviolence as a philosophy brought together with repair of civic life points beyond today's polarization. We need a reawakening to nonviolence tied to repair of civic life.

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