105 Peavey Rd, Ste 116
Chaska, MN 55318 952-361-4931
May 10, 2004
This is a draft outline of the report informed by the three meetings in early 2004. We are currently in the process of gathering feedback from the field on this one-page document. Your feedback will shape the propositions and further inform the report. Deadline for feedback is June 15, 2004. Please send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
“TO MAKE CITIZENS:
SEVEN PROPOSITIONS TOWARD A COURSE CORRECTION IN EDUCATION”
Proposition 1: Civic education-including character education and service-learning-is necessary to the survival of our democracy. We must change the context in which we view the mission of our schools; their lost purpose, which must be regained, is “to make citizens.”
Proposition 2: The overriding question driving education reform must be: “What kind of child (person, human being) do we want to produce? The answer we offer is: “A child who can take charge of his/her learning process so as to: (a) learn for a lifetime, (b) make a net contribution to the society, workforce/economy, and culture, and (c) be civically engaged as a citizen and decision maker.”
Proposition 3: The national education policy preoccupation with reading, mathematics, and science as the “core disciplines” of public education is myopic and lop-sided. It is not delivering the outcomes the nation requires. The importance of placing civic education on a par with core subjects cannot be overstated.
Proposition 4: We need a new reform strategy that balances two paramount goals: (1) higher levels of academic achievement in core academic disciplines, with (2) school and community efforts aimed at producing informed, principled, and engaged citizens.
Proposition 5: Service-learning, character education, and civic education demonstrate an encouraging and impressive success in improving student engagement in school and community life, and in bolstering academic performance.
Proposition 6: A linked approach bringing together civic education, character education, and service-learning must be guided by the following precepts. These linked approaches:
Proposition 7: Success in these approaches will be grounded in a “coalition mentality” that links schools, community organizations, local government, and the business and nonprofit sectors.
American Youth Policy Forum, April 2004. This is a working document for comment.*******
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