The Civic Learning Project
The report’s authors offered several important conclusions regarding the current state of civics education, including:
- The hundreds of disparate organizations currently in the space express almost uniform consensus that the current system of civic education needs to be reimagined and rebuilt for the 21st century.
- The current focus on civic education needs to be expanded to look at civic learning, including interactions in families, community activities, online, and throughout k-12 and higher education.
- An improved system of civic education needs to be designed to produce citizens who are well-informed, productively engaged in working for the common good, and hopeful about our democracy.
- The civic learning field must be developed, coordinating multiple organization and individuals around common goals and the conditions needed to succeed.
- With so many funders, nonprofit organizations, companies, and community groups seeking to engage in civic learning efforts, collaboration is the only way forward to avoid the pitfalls new movements often face.
This project has proposed immediate next steps, including convening working groups to draft plans to catalyze action in four key areas: developing and communicating a common identity, expanding research and developing useful measurement tools, figuring out how to scale up successful civic learning programs, and planning a small number of pilot projects to implement a comprehensive civic learning approach.