EDUCATING FOR DEMOCRACY
In the days before his death Civil Rights activist John Lewis wrote, "Democracy is not a state. It is an act." We wholeheartedly agree with Congressman Lewis. Democracy is not a spectator sport; it requires our participation, and this participation must be oriented toward justice. To create a more just democracy, citizens must be able to critically assess systems of inequity and work collaboratively to redress inequity and create lasting change. Dialogue is central to the process and can be transformative. Frequent and effective dialogue can engender equity and inclusion for everyone. We believe that K-12 students across the country have the power to embody these principles and shape America into the just democracy we all desire and deserve.
Race and racism continue to be defining features of life in America. Learning about the role of racism in the past can help disrupt and dismantle racism of the present. We have, therefore, created developmentally appropriate civic education materials focused on issues of race and justice in the United States, with an emphasis on civic discourse and critical histories. Through these efforts and materials, we hope to support K-12 students' development into justice-oriented citizens who will move us closer to that Beloved Community envisioned by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Congressman Lewis and others: "a nation and world at peace with itself."
Click on the topics below to access professional development resources on race and teaching, profiles of resistances, and ready-to-use lesson plans and units.