Civic education is the continual and systematic provision of information and learning experiences to all citizens for their effective participation in democratic life. The purpose of civic education is to have an informed citizenry that actively participates in governance affairs of the society on the basis of enhanced knowledge, understanding and ownership.
Civic education imparts information and creates awareness of civic morals and values, rights and responsibilities and on how these are exercised and accessed by all citizens within society including disadvantaged and marginalized groups.
Civic education is often used in combination with other participatory governance tools. It can take different forms from classroom-based learning, informal training, experiential learning, to mass media campaigns. When done effectively, it leads to more effective and inclusive participation by all citizens in socio-economic, political and governance processes affecting their lives.
‘Purpose-driven’ Civic Education?
Purpose-driven civic education is designed to trigger some actions from citizens to participate in specific process or to take specific action in a democratic process. It should activate the grassroots to engage in public action, amplify their issues and offer solutions. Purpose-driven civic education should be:
- Delivered in a timely way, for example, just before the county government process where citizen participation is sought, to activate citizens to engage effectively in the process.
- Relevant targeted and delivered appropriately so that citizens can see the value of participating. For example, key information and documents i.e. policies, laws, plans and budgets, reports to be deliberated on should be simplified so that citizens can easily understand and relate the content to their interests.
Last Update: November 16, 2021