Edited By Esther Thorson, Mitchell S. McKinney and Dhavan Shah
Chapter Six: State Policies for Civic Education
| 113 →
State Policies FOR Civic Education
The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE)
PETER LEVINE AND KEI KAWASHIMA-GINSBERG
A number of studies have found that students exposed to high-quality civic learning experiences in K–12 schools gain knowledge, skills, and habits of participation. These opportunities, however, are provided very unequally and inadequately. While all states have policies intended to provide civic education to their students, states’ policies vary significantly. Some states require every student to take one or more civics courses and pass state tests; some do neither. All states have adopted certain standards for civic education, yet they differ in content and emphasis. However, the variation in state policies is not related to either the civic learning experiences that students receive or to graduates’ knowledge, skills, and habits. Therefore, as we argue in this chapter, the next frontier for those concerned about students’ civic education is to address the gap between policies and practices in our schools.
The literature on policies for civic education is not extensive, but several rigorous studies have found the same pattern. In each study, experiencing high-quality civic education (as defined in Gibson & Levine, 2003, and Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools, 2012) is related to the outcomes that the investigators chose to investigate, usually a combination of students’ knowledge of civics and politics and their actual participation or planned engagement in...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.