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Celebrating 20 years since the Crick Report

Also in this edition: How to give your school council a boost. Was there a ‘youthquake’ in 2017? Thinking again about rhetoric and the role of talk.

Issue No 47 Summer 2018

Journal of the Association for Citizenship Teaching

Cover image St Eunan’s active citizenship project from Claire Dunphy

Education in Nepal Text & photos by Pete Pattisson see page 32

Youthquake: Young People and the Future of Democracy

National teacher conference for citizenship, democracy, politics, SMSC and British Values Saturday 7 July 2018 | City Hall, London | 11.00am - 6.00pm Registration and exhibitors from 10.15am Join experienced, newly qualified and trainee teachers

Book today: ACT Member: £99.00 | ACT Member Concessionary (for trainee teachers) £29.50 Our conference partner is:

• A day of CPD to discuss teaching democracy and Citizenship • Practical workshops to build confidence, subject knowledge, pedagogy and curriculum • Innovative citizenship teaching approaches, research and classroom practice • Guidance, support and inspiration from teachers and citizenship teaching resource providers

CONFERENCE PROGRAMME HIGHLIGHTS Guest speakers • Young active citizens from Hamilton Academy, Leicester • James Sloam, Reader in Politics at Royal Holloway, University of London, and co-author of “Youth Quake: Young people and the 2017 General Election” • Welcome and introduction on behalf of the Mayor of London’s Education & Youth team • Launch of ACT Teaching Ambassadors and Regional Networks ACT is a partner of:

Workshops 1. T okenism and toilets: What does your school council teach your pupils? (Smart School Councils) 2. T he Deliberative Classroom: using debate to explore democracy, protest and critical media literacy (English-Speaking Union, Middlesex University and ACT) 3. E ngaging Students in Democracy (Kingston University and trainee teachers) 4. P arliament, Politics and Active Citizenship in your classroom (Parliament Education Service) 5. E ducation for democracy: critical engagement with your local context to promote active Citizenship (Harris Federation ITE and Addey and Stanhope School) Tasters and tips to help your teaching from: The Politics Project, Bite the Ballot, Send my Friend to School, The Economist Educational Foundation, WE and Team London Young Ambassadors and Shout Out UK Reception: celebrate Equaliteas and democratic rights

We are hosted by the Mayor of London’s Education & Youth team

We are supported by:

Contents Contents

Autumn 2013Summer 2018

Peace Education Theme: Crick – 20 years on Editorial notes Editorial notes In this edition we celebrate 20 06 Editorial – Peace Education & Citizenship We have rather grandly conceived 04 Editorial 12 sinceand the Crick Report, which of thisyears edition the previous one CND’s Liddle introduces the theme LeeAnna Jerome recommended citizenship education (Issue 36) as our ‘War and Peace’ 07 Teaching Special Editorial 08 Things Citizenship we forgot to remember should be our introduced the curriculum collection and guesttoeditor has KarlChris Sweeney gives Lee Jerome a vote of thanks Waller in England. We’ll say more about commissioned a fascinating rangethis of 08 The evolution of modern peace education... theexplore theme editorial the next 12 The Crick Report and the Wisdom of Hindsight – articlesinto Peace on Education TheWhat progenitor of Citizenship? by Charles Harlock page, but it also seems fitting in this We Know 20 Years On and a Plan for Action and the connection to Citizenship. 12 Peace-building through Peer Mediation celebration to publish the David Kerr Thanks to Anna Liddle, fromresearch cnd, for of a colleague whohas hasdone taughtand the we Sara Hagel & Ellis Brooks create more peaceful schools the amazing job she 18 Celebrating 17 years of citizenship teacher education: Reflections from subject and completed her doctorate hope you find something here that 16 Testimony in the classroom citizenship trained teachers investigating it. Clearly Julie Heathcote provides inspires you to act. the tradiTomAmit Jackson Puni explains how survivor testimony aPeace great example of theisexciting careers tion of Education a particuenriches the experience of learning about conflict that have opened up overwe the spend past 20 23 20 years on: In celebration of the citizenship teacher educator larly important one whilst 19 TheMarcus legacyBhargava of the A-bomb years for colleagues, and provides an the year ahead talking to young peoTatsuya Tateishi on the Hiroshima Peace Museum inspiring role model for teachers who ple about War and Commemoration, 28 It’s a great time to look forward! 20 Routes to Peace understand how useful research can and Anna has pulled together a good Liz Moorse be perspectives. – both in helping practitioners to Diane Hawden on the Peace Museum UK range of 24 their work, also to Wethink alsoabout welcome backbut some 21 Coventry: City of Peace & Reconciliation disseminate exciting aspects of good old friends to the journal. We have Balbir Sohal involves young people in peace projects Features practice beyond thefrom walls of the school. the final news update a major 24 Inspiring Global Citizens 07 Obituary for Ann Nelson by ‘Connecting Classrooms’ in thisfrom edition we are pleased to researchAlso project colleagues British Council’s Andrea Mason links with schools abroad feature the work of James Pete and 32 Building a better democracy - how technology can bring young people and in York, and an update fromSloam 26 “Helpless, but not without hope” his colleagues from the Political Studies Pattisson about his experiences in politicians together Teaching Israel / Palestine by Matt Jeziorski Association. One of our objectives as the wider world of Citizenship. Harriet Andrews 32 citizenship to encourage 28 Much more than ‘statutory requirement’ There is alsoeducators a timelyis update 34 School councils - what’s the point? young people to see the world from act and Democratic Life politically Chris Gabbett & Mollie Edwards’ peaceful school Greg Sanderson

38 “Youthquake”: Features & Researchhow and why young people reshaped the political landscape in 2017 31 Creating citizenship communities James Sloam, Rakib Ehsan and Matt Henn

Young people’s place in society by Ian Davies et al winning StillAat War? formula: Classical rhetoric for oracy education Dr Arlene Holmes-Henderson Pete Pattisson explores Nepal’s conflicted, post-war education system 46 EducationReview and the Update Dialogue of Humanity 36 Curriculum Neil Phillipson ACT’s lobbying activities on the new curriculum by Lee Jerome 43 32

50 Pupils’ Perceptions of Citizenship Education and Good Citizenship: ReviewsAn&empirical Regularscase study Julie Heathcote 37 Seen and Heard by Unicef; Truman on Trial by CND

Teaching resources reviewed by Lee Jerome and Balbir Sohal there’s more to a curriculum than facts Regulars 38 ACTually... Lee Jerome finds the draft programmes of study offensive

54 Review AQA GCSE revision guide School student Design &Perins Production Editor : Lionel Openshaw | Telephone +44 (0)7985 979 390 Email | Web

55 Spotlight on Council PublishedHans Svennevig by the Association for Citizenship Teaching, 63 Gee Street, London ec1v 3rs Email | Telephone +44 (0)20 7253 0051

Notice of Annual General Meeting Notice is hereby given that the 2018 Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Association for Citizenship Teaching (ACT) will be held at City Hall, The Queen’s Walk, London, SE1 2AA at 2.15pm on Saturday 7 July. The AGM is for all members of ACT and provides an opportunity to discuss ACT’s work with our Board of Trustees. Members are also able to stand to serve on the ACT Council. Members are invited to send questions to the Board of Trustees and Treasurer for consideration at the AGM. Please email questions to by 5.00pm on 6 July or submit questions on paper to a member of ACT staff by 12.00pm on 7 July. Documents pertinent to the AGM will be made available to download and read on the ACT website:

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© 2018 Association for Citizenship Teaching (ACT) ISSN 1474-9335 No part of this publication may be reproduced, copied | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

or transmitted in any form or by any means without the permission of the publisher. Teaching Citizenship is the official journal of ACT.

engage curriculum in it and so their exploration on theand national and of whether or not 2017 ushered in a the ‘Actually…’ column focuses ‘youthquake’ is particularly important. on what’s wrong and what needs I’m also pleased to welcome Hans to happen next. As we move out of Svennevig and David Kerr as co-editors of the campaign phase and into the the journal. You’ll see more about them in interpretation and implementation pages of be thisvery edition, and hear more phase,the act will active from them in the next producing resources andedition. providing support to members. Please stay in LeeletJerome touch to us know what you want and what you can help with. Most importantly, share your thoughts on any aspect of the new curriculum Design Production Editor:next Grant Lucas that will be a& focus of the Telephone +44 (0)1386 750412 edition of the journal. We will make Email space for a range of opinions on what Web we do with thisbycurriculum Published the Associationnext. for Citizenship Lee Jerome & Gavin Baldwin, Teaching, 50 Featherstone Street, London, EC1Y 8RT Teaching Citizenship Editors EmailEmail Telephone +44 (0)20 7566 4133 – or –

The views expressed in signed articles do not necessarily represent those of ACT, and we cannot accept responsibility for any products

or services advertised within the journal. Printed and distributed by Premier Print Group: www.premier

Teaching Citizenship | 3 / Autumn 2013 / Issue 37 / Teaching Citizenship / 3

Theme Editorial

Lee Jerome is editor of Teaching Citizenship and an Associate Professor of Education at Middlesex University.

Celebrating 20 years since the Crick Report Lee Jerome

he Crick Report was published in 1998 and ushered in a new era for those of us interested in promoting political education in England. It also set up a fascinating experiment – how to build a school subject. I was teaching history in a secondary school at the time and went to my first citizenship education conference at the Institute of Education in London to find out what it was all about. I was excited to meet so many people coming together around the agenda and remember returning to school with an enthusiastically written briefing paper for my SMT. I was so taken by the exciting possibilities for embedding citizenship across everything we did, that I even took the precaution of checking the paper with the NUT rep to make sure I wasn’t going to get into trouble for rabble-rousing! Given the current pace of change in education it’s worth remembering now that, whilst the decision was taken to introduce statutory citizenship education in secondary schools in 1998, the government also wanted to give teachers time to plan for the implementation and so it didn’t come into force in the curriculum until 2002. I was lucky enough to get a job at the Institute for Citizenship in 2000 to help with the preparations, joining the DfE-funded national road show, developing resources and advice, providing training and eventually producing text books. There was huge excitement that we were part of something big – the creation of a new subject, and the mainstreaming of an educational ethos that put young people’s agency at the heart of the project. Since then, new teachers have joined the profession because Citizenship opened up routes to a wide range of undergraduates, who would have struggled to find a home in the traditional national curriculum; and many others have ‘converted’ to Citizenship. Some have used Citizenship as a stepping stone onto other things, to leadership, consultancy, NGO management and a host of other exciting careers. What binds all of these people together is a tremendous sense of optimism about young people, not just about what they can become, but about who they are already, and what they can achieve in the here and now. I’ve been moved to tears of

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admiration more times than I can remember by young people debating, campaigning, teaching and supporting others, and getting angry at injustice and inaction. In this edition we have asked a few colleagues to capture some of the energy and optimism that accompanied the Crick Report, that same energy subsequently drove forward the new subject, and since 2010, that optimism has enabled us to keep making the argument for high quality Citizenship when not everyone in government has shared that view. Chris Waller starts off this theme with a personal reflection about how important Citizenship was – both to him as a teacher, and to the profession as a whole. He reminds us that before 1998 efforts in this direction were fitful and disparate, and helps us to appreciate the value we derived from subject status. It opened up the possibility that we would develop as a strong community of practitioners, and ACT’s continued success is a testament to that power. David Kerr’s article comes next, and he is perfectly placed to reflect on the subject from the Crick Committee through to the present day. He was there at the very beginning and has helped to shape the subject at every stage of its development. He attempts to take in the big picture and makes some suggestions about how we might learn from the past two decades to refresh our thinking. This theme is taken up Liz Moorse’s article, which reflects on ACT’s position and spells out the future direction for the subject association. Amit Puni has interviewed a number of those teachers who came in to the profession as Citizenship specialists. By sharing their stories he demonstrates just how valuable a contribution this relatively small group of people have made. And this theme is echoed in Marcus Bhargava’s article, for which he interviewed a group of Citizenship teacher educators about their experiences. Both these articles demonstrate that the legacy of Citizenship in the curriculum is not just to be found in Citizenship lessons, but in the broader ramifications for education. In many ways this group of people have become the guardians of an ideal: that young people should have agency in their own learning; that learning and action can be combined; and that powerful learning can happen outside of the classroom, through community | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

participation. In a climate where standards, tests, and knowledge acquisition threaten to dominate the educational agenda, these counter-balances are important to ensure we maintain a more fully rounded education for young people. Of course, this is no time for complacency. Our subject is still in a weaker position that it was 10 years ago, and none of the contributors to this theme give the impression that we

can rest on our laurels. But by sharing their sense of optimism, and reflecting on how much has been achieved, they certainly help us to think afresh about the challenges that lie ahead to protect, consolidate and strengthen Citizenship in schools. They also reveal some of the assets we can draw on to continue to develop our work in schools – optimism, energy and some inspirational colleagues.

Pearson have exciting opportunities for Teachers to become Examiners for our GCSE Citizenship Studies qualification. Being an examiner is a great way to: • Develop your career in education • Earn some extra money in a part-time role, alongside any full time commitments you may have • Gain invaluable insight into assessment • Network with like minded professionals For more information and how to apply, please visit our website If you would like to speak to Recruitment & Resourcing please visit | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Illustration by Tang Yau Hoong

Teaching Citizenship | 5


News Roundup

Diary dates

Landmark House of Lords Committee report calls for statutory Citizenship and a trained teacher in every school

2 July 2018 National Democracy Week Lesson materials are available and events are being scheduled. Check the website for the latest news. https://democracyweek.campaign.

In the landmark report published on 18 April, The Ties that Bind: Citizenship and Civic Engagement in the 21st Century, the House of Lords Citizenship and Civic Engagement Committee has called on Government to take urgent action to reprioritise the subject of Citizenship and ensure every school has a trained Citizenship teacher. The report sets out a clear and compelling case for the role of high quality Citizenship in all schools along with wider recommendations including to revise fundamental British Values as Shared Values of British Citizenship to encourage positive citizenship.

Five Nations Development Projects 2018-19 We are really pleased to invite teachers to apply for development grants of up to £750. A small number of grants are available for teachers who wish to create a small curriculum project that supports their work to develop citizenship education or education for active citizenship in their school. This year we are particularly interested in projects that: • develop understanding of democracy, human rights and active and global citizenship • involve cross-border collaboration between schools in different jurisdictions (England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales). • For more information visit the website:

Liz Moorse appointed by the DFE as UK expert representative to the Council of Europe’s new Education Policy Advice Network for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights.

Liz recently attended her first meeting in Copenhagen (23-24 April 2018) of the new Council of Europe Education Policy Advice Network (EPAN) for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights. Liz represented the UK at the meeting at which an impressive 43 of the 47 member states were present. The conference was the launch of the new Reference Framework of Competencies for Democratic Culture. The Framework is underpinned by the Council’s recommendation that education has four main purposes: • preparation for the labour market; • preparation for life as active citizens in democratic societies; • personal development; • the development and maintenance of a broad, advanced knowledge base.

Citizenship Foundation re-brand In case you were wondering, the Citizenship Foundation has become Young Citizens. Their new website is here:

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7 July 2018 Youthquake: Young People and the Future of Democracy National Teacher Conference for Citizenship, SMSC and British Values ACT’s national conference will take place in City Hall, London.

30 July – 4 August 2018 Debate Academy The ESU is offering bursaries for young people to attend the National Debate Academy. More details here:

6 November CPD day at Parliament For more information on forthcoming dates visit the website:

12-18 November 2018 Parliament Week You can order your kit now to make sure you’re prepared for Parliament Week, which will include a range of local and national events and programmes for students.

15-17 April 2019 Political Studies Association Conference Next year’s conference will be held in Nottingham, the website usually opens for abstract submission in September. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Denise Howe has been a member of ACT and ACT Council for a number of years and worked closely with Ann Nelson on developing ACT North East. Here she shares her memories of Ann, who died earlier this year.

Remembering Ann Nelson Denise Howe Ann and I first met as colleagues in Durham in 2001. It was apparent straight away that she was an ‘out of the box’ thinker who wanted Citizenship moved up the agenda – believing that getting schools active in their community would instil in them an understanding of the roles we all play in society….and a simple love for humanity. That was where Ann’s passion came from – she liked people – she found them infinitely fascinating –whether they were teachers, pupils, politicians, window cleaners, gardeners, doctors – all were equally of interest to her – and all were of equal worth – treated with the same politeness, engaging smile and subtle bribery that Ann was the Queen of!!! She was the Master at getting things done! She knew how to praise and encourage until you just knew you had the skills and were the person for the job!! Her contribution to Citizenship – Nationwide – has been immense – as our Colleagues from ACT witness: Lee Jerome – former Chair of ACT says: “When ACT created the Council, Ann agreed to be Vice Chair, but whereas some people would enjoy the title and simply stand in the wings ready to deputise if necessary, Ann was instrumental in building the sense of purpose and identity among the group members, helping to shape the agenda, identifying who would have a strong view on which issues, and very often paved the way for productive meetings by networking beforehand to work out strategies for how to manage the session. It was typical of Ann’s manner that all this was done and received in a way that was unmistakably positive. It felt like a privilege, and she did generally get what she wanted!”


Kindness and generosity in word and spirit will be her legacy – and she will be much missed as a very good friend to all who crossed her path.

Chris Waller, Director of Education at ACT says: “Along with her husband Ted, Ann took a central role in managing her Citizenship crusade in the North East. She always found a way to rope him in and that was her hallmark-the ability to draw people into her world. She even drew in Sir Bernard Crick who always attended her ACT North East Conferences.” | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Citizenship Update

She would often point out the Miners Mural in Durham City Offices as an example of why Citizenship mattered: Ordinary people striving for change to make the lives of others better. That sums up Ann. She was indeed instrumental in developing Active Citizenship, particularly in North East Schools, organising yearly conferences, In-Service training, update workshops and Celebration days; and she developed the Quality Standard that saw students developing their own ‘ACTive Campaigns’. Most memorable for me was a Local Infant School that instigated its own Pooper Scooper Challenge after a large ‘delivery’ was left outside its school gates! Those 5 and 6 year olds were fearless! Taking photographs, making leaflets and posters, involving their local Councillor and MP. Ann was a great colleague, but also an amazing friend. We shared a love of all things Arty Crafty, and she shared with others her love of humanity – in her work with the Siroptimists, School Governors and her input into school curricula, lessons and In-Service training, which was always personalised with a smile and a kind word. Kindness and generosity in word and spirit will be her legacy – and she will be much missed as a very good friend to all who crossed her path. Teaching Citizenship | 7


Chris Waller is Director of Education at ACT leading our education work, membership development and support programmes.

Things we forgot to remember Chris Waller

In this article ACT’s Director of Education reflects on the impact of the Crick Report and subsequent curriculum reforms on his professional identity and practice. Chris points out that Crick was important firstly because he provided a mechanism for pulling a disparate set of ideas together into a coherent programme, and secondly because he legitimised a field that was sometimes seen as politically contentious. This approach to harnessing existing expertise and enthusiasm helps to explain how Citizenship was able to develop so quickly in those early years.


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The problem was this was an isolating time – I was on my own and it was hard to find accomplices. I think now that what was missing was a Crick – someone to coalesce around.

help them cope with being citizens and take an active role in their community. For me it was the work of Jerome Bruner and ‘Man a Course of Study’ (MACOS) that marked a move away from content to processes and thinking widely about what skills and experiences pupils needed to become better learners and deeper thinkers. At the same time there were those of us who were also considering what the contexts for learning might be and what useful knowledge might be explored and then also how that knowledge might be used. The problem was this was an isolating time – I was on my own and it was hard to find accomplices. I think now that what was missing was a Crick – someone to coalesce around, who might listen, who might rebuff ideas but not dismiss them out of hand; someone who might absorb ideas and then find a way to lead the forward. Crick was there, banging the drum for Citizenship education but isolated teachers did not necessarily make the connections. We would have to wait. However, I also think that once there was Crick then teachers were going to be rushing to help him take Citizenship forward. There were those who looked at civics as a subject for study, thought more critically about British Constitutional History as an examination subject and were already teasing out what might go into a Lifeskills or PSE course, without ever thinking that it might be wise to break apart the key tenets of these ideas into personal perspectives and societal | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

perspectives. Many of us just rummaged around until we put together courses for pupils that seemed to make some sense, tried them out, listened to what pupils told us and then adapted. We also talked to those in youth service about how we might link the classroom teaching to the community beyond. This was aided and abetted by innovations like the Technical and Vocational Education Initiative (TVEI) in the 1980s, prompting again freer and more tangential thinking, connecting schools and teachers to enable them to share ideas and pose challenges. With the national curriculum in 1988 came reformed thinking and a more direct mention of citizenship and law and politics and democracy within the context of cross curricula themes and dimensions. At the same time there were new curriculum resources like the Crime, Law and Society Project (CLASP), Law in Education Project and those from the new Citizenship Foundation. Then there was the Centre for Citizenship Studies in Education and the Institute of Citizenship; university and NGO’s responding to the perceived disaffection with politics by young people. However, for me as a teacher, if ever there was a starting point that ramped up the action then the publication of Curriculum Guidance 8 Education for Citizenship (NCC 1990) was it. There in one slim volume was a basis for a curriculum unit…or even across a year a series of units… or even across a key stage an emerging theme.


Many of us just rummaged around until we put together courses for pupils that seemed to make some sense, tried them out, listened to what pupils told us and then adapted. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


‘Some argue that during the twentieth century, in spite of all the achievements and progress, British democracy has not been gaining strength, because people’s sense of political partnership has not grown with their political opportunities. Accordingly they find it easy to prophesy that little by little democracy will disappear. That is the challenge-to transform what is to some extent a passive democracy into an active one’ (The British Way and Purpose, Directorate of Army Education, HMSO 1944) The quotation above in many ways summarises what Bernard Crick saw as the essence of the issues that later filled so much of his life. Astonishingly this quotation comes from a publication written at the height of the Second World War when he was a youngster yet successive educational interventions failed to address the issues until perhaps he led the charge. Trying to decide how the teachers who were going to be attracted to Citizenship started on their journey cannot be a one size fits all. Those of us who are entrenched in the subject, its meaning and actions took various paths. My own journey was one shaped by those who thought that working with and for pupils was for more than just the expected norms of schooling. Of course there was no national curriculum-that didn’t mean teachers just did what they wanted – there were still exam courses at 16 plus. However, there certainly was lots of free thinking about what pupils might experience in school and how it might

I began to experiment with short courses on aspects of the law and democracy – what local politicians actually did, how they were elected, how they could be help to account…but more importantly, how political knowledge and skills could be translated into actions in the school and community. This started to move the purpose of study in the units from that of my personal interest in politics and democracy or my decision to teach certain aspects of law to those that interested students because they had a vested interest for themselves – they were beginning to see that these units of work could empower them and help them have a greater influence in their community and school. This is what Crick was eventually to place at the centre of his premise – that young people should be motivated to have the skills, knowledge and understanding to play an active and full part in the life of society. So far so good – lots of teachers doing interesting things on their own or in small groups, but where was the national or regional coherence? Just before the Blair government in 1997 and all that followed for Citizenship, some local authorities were seeing the writing on the wall and taking more affirmative action. My own LEA, Hampshire set up a whole project to create a significant document detailing the key tenets of Citizenship education, drawn from a number of national sources and further detailing the sort of content and skills that might be taught across each key Teaching Citizenship | 9

Theme Things we forgot to remember

using the curriculum to think critically about local, national and international events and how they affected their immediate life, who they might share their insight with or what they might do about them. This was also about teaching methods – Crick was interested in how teachers were going to respond to his framing of the subject, what advice they might proffer from their previous experience and also how he might help them take teaching and learning into a more edgy place. Thinking about relevant pedagogy was back! The original national curriculum seemed to have been created remotely – adrift from those doing the teaching. It was cumbersome, too detailed and lacked a sense of ownership by teachers. I think Crick and his curriculum vision seemed very close to teachers and reflected shared thinking. The gathering of the content for Crick’s report in 1998 and the curriculum that followed belonged more to the teaching community. There was a sense that this was doable, in fact a sense that teachers were owning this. Crick acknowledged that teachers could not only bring experience from earlier iterations of the subject but were prepared to share and offer new insights – things that Crick respected and welcomed. The light touch approach also gave confidence that this was a work in progress and there would be step by step evolution. Of course, this was perhaps a chimera, as light touch could become too light, and the plans for evolution were lost as other pressures built. Without a doubt, many teachers I worked with through to 2004 were keen to talk about the aspirational manifestation of Crick’s report and the original 2002 Citizenship curriculum. Perhaps what happened next, the revised Secondary Curriculum 2007 bore this out. It was seen by | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

many teachers as just brilliant in its design and execution, though it did still have missing pillars and required further pedagogical development. At the core was alternative thinking about how to organise the teaching of the content and skills but the principles of the Crick Report (especially the box diagram showing how all the elements in Citizenship education linked from theory to practice) remained intact. By 2007 I was working at ACT and no longer full time in teaching so I missed out on this step change. My journey continued in Citizenship, as did Bernard’s. He always knew that a change of government might put the Citizenship curriculum at risk. He worked hard to ensure that it’s cross party origins were not lost on a new generation of political leaders and thinkers. He also worried about the paucity of numbers in ITE and the lack of planned and sustainable CPD. Maybe there is one last story to tell. It happened to me in the mid 1990s. My courses in Citizenship were popular, especially in Year 10 and 11. One unit was about how to bring about change – what skills, knowledge and understanding did pupils need to do this and what precedents were there we could explore? A group of girls in my Year 11 classes were interested in changing the school uniform so that girls could wear trousers, especially in winter. After much chat and planning, it was agreed that this might be the focus of a campaign in the latter stages of the summer term. Then one small group of girls took matters into their own hands through direct action – they appeared in Year 11 assembly one day in trousers in breach of school uniform regulations. The head teacher was taking the assembly and the girls were summarily marched out and sent home. ‘Don’t return until you have


Crick and his curriculum vision seemed very close to teachers and reflected shared thinking… Crick’s report in 1998 and the curriculum that followed belonged more to the teaching community. There was a sense that this was do-able, in fact a sense that teachers were owning this. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


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Then came Crick! The real beauty was that his approach was inclusive – all parties, cross House, cross Parliament. That took the political sting out of the subject back at school. The whole breadth of the movement by QCA, David Blunkett and Bernard Crick was life changing and affirming.


stage. This included isolating key themes like human rights, civil and criminal law, voting and democracy, local and central government, courts and justice, the powers of the state and the rights of the individual. No PSE was included, this was just Citizenship. For teachers this was the first real coherent curriculum document that included Citizenship knowledge, skills and actions. Other local authorities began to look carefully at Hampshire Citizenship Guidelines and formulate their own practice. Then came Crick! The real beauty was that his approach was inclusive – all parties, cross House, cross Parliament. That took the political sting out of the subject back at school. Now we were no longer simply to be perceived as left wing nuts. The whole breadth of the movement by QCA, David Blunkett and Bernard Crick was life changing and affirming. At long last central government was interested in bringing together those for whom Citizenship was now at the centre of their teaching. I think this is the single most important aspect of Crick for teachers. However, I also think that Crick gave licence to teachers to think laterally about how to teach political issues in class, to add rigour and status to the teaching of Citizenship. Everything Crick seemed to enquire about had at its heart not just the acquisition of knowledge about politics, government, democracy, justice and law but what these might mean for pupils and how they could use this in their lives. In doing so Crick was asking teachers to dig deeper into the issues and raise questions with pupils and encourage pupils to do the same. This was accompanied by advice to engage with controversial, topical and sensitive matters in the classroom. This was not new to teachers but the more public role was – teachers and pupils now were legitimately

the correct uniform on’ they were told! Some came back straightaway, others did not. Those who did went straight to see the head and told him they were serious about wanting change and rationally put their case. The head teacher listened and said that if they were serious then they had to design and lead a campaign with all pupils, teachers, parents and governors involved; uniform change was not merely within his gift. This was then brought back to the Citizenship classes I ran and for the rest of the term they mounted a sustained and active campaign with all interested parties. Following a series of votes and referenda, it was decided from the following September that all girls could choose to wear trousers at any time of the year. In Citizenship there was jubilation and much dissection of the campaign and process. During one discussion one boy spoke up ‘Of course’ he said ‘the head was always going to change his position wasn’t he!!’ We all looked around at the boy. ‘Why do you say that?’ I asked ‘Because the head is always going on about the importance of equal opportunity and encouraging all of us to take part in policy making and use our voice for change therefore not allowing the trousers he knew he would be unjust’ Wow, I thought, not only a brilliant campaign but this lad had it nailed. Tying together the importance of school policy, student voice and rights was Citizenship in action in school and this guy recognised it all. I was not alone in taking such experiences with me from the classroom to Crick. Crick knew about, understood, saw and listened to such stories and incorporated this in his vision. It is testament to him that the Citizenship curriculum that emerged in 2002 was such a partnership where teachers had early influence on the final outcome. Teaching Citizenship | 11


David Kerr is Consultant Director of Education at Young Citizens and is also Head of ITT at the University of Reading. He can be contacted at: or

The Crick Report and the Wisdom of Hindsight – What We Know 20 Years On and a Plan for Action David Kerr David Kerr has been one of the most significant people in the development of Citizenship in England. He was part of the Crick Committee and helped to draft the report’s recommendations, then became an advisor to the DfE to help embed the subject, along the way he helped to establish one of the first specialist Citizenship PGCE courses and at NFER led the national evaluation of the subject’s implementation. He has helped to create, shape and steer the subject through his numerous roles and so is well placed to take stock 20 years on to reflect on what has been achieved, what has been learned and what we might do to move things on.



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practice, research and policy about the progress of Citizenship in schools since 1998. The final section takes stock and, using the wisdom of hindsight, sets out a Plan for Action for what still needs to happen if the ambition of the Crick Group to strengthen education for citizenship is to continue The Crick Group to be realised. unanimously agreed that 20 Years Ago: The Crick Group and the citizenship and Vision and Ambitions of the Crick Report the teaching of On 19 November 1997, David Blunkett, pledged democracy was ‘to strengthen education for citizenship and the so important teaching of democracy in schools’ and announced for schools the establishment of an Advisory Group of the and the nation same name. The Group had support from all that it could no political parties to reinforce that education for longer be left to citizenship was a political not a party political uncoordinated issue. This all-party support was confirmed by local initiatives. having the Rt Hon Betty Boothroyd, Speaker of the House of Commons, as the Group’s patron. The Group was established in response to increasing concern across politics, the media | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Back in 1998, a cumbersome, statutory National Curriculum from age 5 to 16 had been in place for 8 years. It comprised overly prescriptive curriculum documents and assessment tasks that were swamping curriculum space and suffocating creativity, leading to teacher fatigue and pupil stress.


Introduction The wisdom of hindsight, defined in the dictionary as ‘the knowledge that experience gives you’, is a great thing. It was in 1998 that the Advisory Group for Education for Citizenship and the Teaching of Democracy in Schools, chaired by Professor (later) Sir Bernard Crick, and set up by the new Secretary of State for Education and Employment, the Rt Hon David Blunkett, produced its Final Report (Crick, 1998). It is ironic that many people who teach Citizenship may never have read the Crick Report. The aim of this article is to use the ‘wisdom of hindsight’ to take stock of the efforts to strengthen education for citizenship and the teaching of democracy in schools between 1998 and 2018. The article has three interrelated sections. The first major section sets out the background to the Crick Group and explores the vision and ambition that the Group had for education for citizenship back in 1998. The second section explores briefly what we have learnt from experience of

and society about increased signs of a breakdown in shared engagement in society. These included concerns about anti-social behaviour, lack of community spirit and a decline in participation in civic and political practices. There was a specific concern that such a decline was affecting young people in particular, creating what was termed a ‘democratic deficit’ time bomb. The terms of reference underline the clear aspirations for the Group: ‘To provide advice on effective education for citizenship in schools – to include the nature and practices of participation in democracy: the duties, responsibilities and rights of individuals as citizens; and the value to individuals and society of community activity.’ It was no surprise, that the vision and ambition for education for citizenship set out in the Group’s Final Report were ambitious and comprehensive.

The Crick Group unanimously agreed that citizenship and the teaching of democracy was so important for schools and the nation that it could no longer be left to uncoordinated local initiatives. Rather to be effective and lasting, it needed a coordinated national approach and the confidence and support of the general public | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

and the teaching profession. The first half of the Crick Report was therefore aimed at the general public, media and politicians and the second half at teachers and school leaders. The Group viewed citizenship education as a vital and distinct part of the school curriculum that had been missed from the National Curriculum. The Group deliberately framed education for citizenship as an essential, statutory, part of the curriculum in all schools and an entitlement for all pupils age to 16 and beyond. The intended aim of this education was ambitiously stated as bringing about ‘no less than a change in the political culture of this country both nationally and locally’. However, there was a clear recognition that schools could only do so much and would need the active support of parents, the community, the media and government. The Group also had a clear notion of how citizenship education should be approached in schools based on three, broad, overlapping strands: 1. Social and moral responsibility – ‘children learning from the beginning self-confidence and socially and morally responsible behaviour both in and beyond the classroom, and towards those in authority towards each other.’ 2. Community involvement – ‘learning about and becoming helpfully involved in the life and concerns of their communities, including learning through community involvement and service to the community.’ 3. Political literacy – ‘pupils learning about and how to make themselves effective in public life through knowledge, skills and values.’ Teaching Citizenship | 13

Theme The Crick Report and the Wisdom of Hindsight – What We Know 20 Years On and a Plan for Action

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The period 1998 to 2010 was as a golden age for citizenship education as the Crick Group’s vision and ambition for citizenship education took root in schools and the education establishment.


The Group also recognised the breadth of contexts required for an education for citizenship comprising not just curriculum, but also the school culture and links to wider communities. Finally, there was an explicit recognition that effective citizenship education would involve the teaching of controversial issues. What is forgotten is how the recommendations were tempered by the pragmatic reality of the education system and lack of effective citizenship education in schools at that point. Back in 1998, a cumbersome, statutory National Curriculum from age 5 to 16 had been in place for 8 years. It comprised overly prescriptive curriculum documents and assessment tasks that were swamping curriculum space and suffocating creativity, leading to teacher fatigue and pupil stress. In primary schools there was the added concern of the impact of emergent national strategies for literacy and numeracy.

This pragmatism explains why the new subject of Citizenship ended up, by 2002, a statutory part of the National Curriculum only from age 11 to 16, but only part of a non-statutory framework alongside PSHE from age 5 to 11 and a continued entitlement from age 16. Even at the time of its publication, the aim and ambition of the Crick Group for education for citizenship was heavily influenced by the realpolitik of wider education and curriculum policy. This is in spite of all-party support. Education for Citizenship 1998 to 2018 – Emerging Lessons from Practice, Research and Policy 1998 to 2010: A Golden Age for Citizenship Education The promotion of education for citizenship in and beyond schools continued apace following the Crick Report as official policy apparatus rushed to set up the educational infrastructure befitting Citizenship as a National Curriculum subject. This included: | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

• New curriculum frameworks for Citizenship at primary and secondary level • Commissioned resources to plug identified gaps • Advisory schemes of work and support materials produced by QCA • Setting up of new ITT courses to train Citizenship teachers • Creation of a cadre of Citizenship advisory teachers • Establishment of a professional body, the Association for Citizenship Teaching (ACT) • Creation of new qualifications and exams, including GCSE Citizenship Studies and A level Citizenship • Training of Ofsted inspectors to inspect Citizenship • Continued citizenship education expert group to advise DFE on progress • Appointment of people to support citizenship education in government agencies, such as DFE, QCA, TTA and OFSTED, exam boards and local authorities.


The best teaching and provision was where trained specialist teachers were leading the subject, planning and ensuring that learning was assessed.

The DFE also encouraged the creation of a strong evidence base to inform on-going policy and practice through the commissioning of the ground breaking NFER Citizenship Education Longitudinal Study (CELS) and England’s participation in the IEA international comparative CIVED (1999) and ICCS (2010) studies, with OFSTED and QCA also monitoring and reporting on progress in schools. Looking back, the period 1998 to 2010 was as a golden age for citizenship education as the Crick Group’s vision and ambition for citizenship education took root in schools and the education establishment. Though there were teething problems in introducing a new curriculum subject there were also sizeable gains and successes. The growing evidence base for citizenship education highlights this in findings concerning: • Identified models of effective practice in the delivery of high-quality education for citizenship. Evidence from CELS and Ofsted subject inspections showed that many schools learned to deliver Citizenship with imagination and increased confidence (Ofsted, 2010 and 2013; Keating et al., 2010). The best teaching and provision was where trained specialist teachers were leading the subject, planning and ensuring that learning was assessed. Pupils in these schools received regular Citizenship lessons enabling them to develop their civic knowledge | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


The Crick Group, taking advice from the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA), wanted to avoid the introduction of citizenship education in schools exacerbating these issues. Therefore the Group tempered how education for citizenship should be framed to give it the best chance of being embraced by the teaching profession. The Group’s recommendations included: • A light touch framework of essential elements in contrast to a detailed, prescriptive curriculum • A claim that citizenship education would comprise only 5 per cent of curriculum time, some of it existing • Statutory introduction across the 5 to 16 age range with encouragement to continue beyond 16 • No designated curriculum model of delivery but leaving it up to schools and teachers to decide what worked best • A call that all those involved in the education of children know how they could support schools in promoting citizenship education • A phased introduction over a four year period to give time for a curriculum to be created, materials to be developed and teachers to be trained • A demand for the establishment of a Standing Commission on Citizenship Education to monitor progress and suggest amendments.

The first two strands were not exclusive to citizenship education but intended to lay the foundation for the third strand. This third strand was the essential part of an education for citizenship that pupils would focus on from late primary through secondary education. The essence of citizenship education for the teaching profession was set out as a light touch, robust framework of essential elements comprising key concepts, values and dispositions, skills and aptitudes and knowledge and understanding that pupils should acquire across an education for citizenship (see Figure 1 below). These were then expressed as learning outcomes to be achieved in each key stage.

and skills and experience active citizenship throughout compulsory schooling. • On-going gaps in the knowledge, skills, experiences and confidence of pupils and teachers and in school provision. CELS and Ofsted reports highlighted continued weaknesses in the teaching and assessment of key aspects of Citizenship. Many schools were still not addressing all aspects of the statutory Citizenship curriculum sufficiently, particularly where the subject was taught by non-specialists. In particular, some teachers found the political literacy aspect and teaching controversial issues intimidating. There also remained a mismatch between the demand for trained Citizenship teachers and the numbers being trained in ITT. •E vidence of the benefits, both short and longterm, of an education for citizenship for pupils, schools, communities and society. The IEA studies showed a clear link between civic knowledge and current and intended political participation and that civic knowledge is boosted by discussing controversial issues (Schulz et al., 2010; Kerr et al., 2010). The CELS study highlighted the benefits of schools encouraging pupils to take more responsibility for the shared life of the school and the wider community (Keating et al., 2010). The CELS-CIVT study found evidence of the continued impact of citizenship education on young people’s political and civic engagement in their early 20s (Sturman et al., 2012). Impact of Citizenship Education in Schools

Graph from: From NFER Citizenship Education Longitudinal Study (CELS)

2010 to 2018: Citizenship Education Marginalised, Narrowed and Under Threat If the period to 2010 was a golden age then the period since has seen considerable lustre taken off the progress of education for citizenship in schools in line with the vision of the Crick Report. The Teaching Citizenship | 15

Theme The Crick Report and the Wisdom of Hindsight – What We Know 20 Years On and a Plan for Action


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Citizenship education has been marginalised as a key political priority and the broad, inclusive vision in the Crick Report replaced by a narrower, exclusive focus on promoting national values as a bulwark against growing threats.

forces to form new delivery partnerships and mechanisms, leading to what critics have called the ‘balkanization’ of education. Having something in a policy or curriculum framework is no longer a guarantee that it will be delivered effectively on the ground. For example, the Coalition Government was initially advised by an Expert Panel to remove Citizenship from the statutory National Curriculum. However, following a concerted campaign, Michael Gove, the then Secretary of State for Education, decided the subject should retain its statutory status. However, this period of uncertainty resulted in many schools reducing their provision and support for Citizenship. Meanwhile the new 2014 Citizenship curriculum has changed emphases from previous versions with more weight given to narrower British civic knowledge and the prominence of financial and social citizenship at the expense of citizenship skills, values and dispositions. Also civic knowledge has been uncoupled from active citizenship with the latter being promoted through the flagship National Citizens Service (NCS). On top of this curriculum shift, the freedom and flexibility given to schools and colleges to determine their own curriculum approaches (with new Academies and Free Schools exempt from the National Curriculum) and the pressures of Ofsted targets, league tables and education for employability has seen citizenship education plummet as a policy and education priority. This has led to a dissipation of experience and expertise built up in schools and the education system in the decade or so following the Crick Report. The recent report from the House of Lords committee on Citizenship and Civic Engagement talks about citizenship education in 2018 being in a ‘parlous state’ as a consequence (House of Lords, 2018). The irony of these shifts is that the political, economic, social and technological challenges facing society and young people in particular, and the depth of the continued ‘democratic deficit’ are greater than ever before. The need for all young people to have an entitlement to an education for citizenship is arguably more important now in 2018 than in 1998 when all political parties rallied behind the Crick Group’s recommendations. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Taking Stock – The Wisdom of Hindsight Recommendations: A Plan for Action Taking stock of the progress of Citizenship over the past 20 years and with the wisdom of hindsight I make six key recommendations. These comprise a Plan for Action designed to continue to bolster education for citizenship in and beyond schools as envisaged by the Crick Group. 1. RE-READ - Everyone engaged with education for citizenship to re-read the Crick Report to remind themselves of the comprehensive vision and ambition for citizenship education in and beyond schools and reignite the drive to achieve this. 2. REBUILD - Politicians from all political parties and persuasions to recognise that education for citizenship is a pressing political not party political issue and to work to rebuild the political consensus that launched the Crick Group and supported its Final Report. 3. PUBLICLY COMMIT - Politicians and civic leaders in the UK, at all levels, to recognise that the development of political literacy among young people is your concern and publicly commit to enhancing education for citizenship at all levels of society, taking up the baton from David Blunkett.


uncertainty and turbulence and take action to put it at the heart of the school curriculum and culture. 5. ADDRESS CHALLENGES - A new Advisory Group on Education for Citizenship be established to build and report on how to achieve a new consensus on citizenship education fit to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The Group should include representatives from young people and address on-going challenges concerning deficits in democratic participation as well as new challenges since 1998 posed by digital citizenship, Brexit, the movement of peoples, global warming, radicalisation and extremism.

The need for all young people to have an entitlement to an education for citizenship is arguably more important now in 2018 than in 1998 when all political parties rallied behind the Crick Group’s recommendations. 6. MONITOR - Following the new Advisory Group, a National Commission on Education for Citizenship to be established to monitor and scrutinise the progress and problems in providing an effective education for citizenship for all young people in the UK and take action (as recommended in the Crick Report but never acted upon).

4. TAKE ACTION - Education leaders and officials to recognise the fundamental contribution that education for citizenship can make in helping young people to make sense of the world around them and to live with confidence and hope in an age of increasing


reasons are complicated but are related to changing priorities in society, combined with broad changes in education policy and curriculum brought about by the election of new governments. This has resulted in a fracturing of the political consensus behind the Crick Report and its replacement by a party political approach which has narrowed the policy scope and ambition of citizenship education. This, in turn, has led to support for Citizenship in the education system and schools weaken and, in some cases, disappear completely. Many of the gains and successes achieved up to 2010 have been reversed and lost with only those committed to the subject continuing to promote its benefits and fight for its retention in school curriculum and culture. The impact of the worldwide economic crisis from 2008 onwards has seen education for citizenship drop down the political and education agenda in the UK and across Europe (Hoskins and Kerr, 2012). The major concern has no longer been with participation but with rising levels of unemployment and the need for education to equip all young people with the key skills of literacy, numeracy and ICT needed for the job market. Alongside this countries and policy-makers have had to respond to growing threats to social and community cohesion brought by the rise of violence, xenophobia, terrorism and extremism. As a consequence, citizenship education has been marginalised as a key political priority and the broad, inclusive vision in the Crick Report replaced by a narrower, exclusive focus on promoting national values as a bulwark against these growing threats. This has seen the government promotion in schools since 2010 of unconnected policies concerning Prevent, fundamental British Values (FBV) and character education at the expense of existing Citizenship. Alongside this, the election of the new Coalition Government in 2010 and Conservative Government in 2015 ushered in changed policy emphases and implementation across government. Chief amongst these in education has been the establishment of overarching policy frameworks, such as the new National Curriculum 2014, which have been implemented on the ground with limited government involvement. This has encouraged market

‘We should not, must not, dare not, be complacent about the health and future of British democracy. Unless we become a nation of engaged citizens, our democracy is not secure.’ These are the words of the then Lord Chancellor, quoted at the end of the Crick Report. They remain as relevant and powerful in 2018 as they did in 1998.

References Crick, B. (1998). Education for Citizenship and the Teaching of Democracy in Schools: Final report of the Advisory Group on Citizenship 22 September. London: Qualifications and Curriculum Authority. Hoskins, B and Kerr, D. (2012) Final Summary and Recommendations: Participatory citizenship in the European Union. Southampton: Southampton University, Institute of Education report for EU.

House of Lords (2018). The Ties That Bind: Citizenship and civic education in the 21st century: Report of the Select Committee on Citizenship and Civic Engagement. London: House of Lords. Keating, A., Kerr, D., Benton, T., Mundy, E., and Lopes, J. (2010). Citizenship education in England 2001-2010: young people’s practices and prospects for the future: the eighth and final report from the Citizenship Education Longitudinal Study (CELS). Department for Education. London: DfE. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Kerr, D., Sturman, L., Schulz, W. and Burge, B. (2010). ICCS 2009 European Report. Civic Knowledge, Attitudes, and Engagement Among Lower-Secondary Students in 24 European Countries. Amsterdam: IEA.

Schulz, W., Ainley, J., Fraillon, J., Kerr, D. and Losito, B. (2010). ICCS 2009 International Report. Civic Knowledge, Attitudes, and Engagement Among LowerSecondary Students in 38 Countries. Amsterdam: IEA.

Ofsted (2010), Citizenship Established? Citizenship in schools 2006/09. Manchester: Ofsted.

Sturman, L., Rowe, N., Sainsbury, M., Wheater, R. and Kerr, D (2012). Citizens in Transition in England: the Longitudinal Cohort at age 19-20. Slough: NFER.

Ofsted (2013). Citizenship Consolidated? A survey of citizenship in schools between 2009 and 2012. London: Ofsted.

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Amit Puni is Senior Lecturer in Teacher Education in Kingston University and Course Leader of the Citizenship with Social Sciences Secondary PGCE.

Celebrating 17 years of citizenship teacher education: Reflections from citizenship trained teachers Amit Puni

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Citizenship provides a chance to really learn what young people are truly about, as the subject gives them a platform and a chance to speak freely in a way that most others do not.


completed my PGCE in Citizenship in 2008. Since then I have taught the subject for 10 years, but like many other citizenship specialists, I have also taught a range of other social science subjects on my education journey. I have recently left my post as Head of Social Sciences in an Outstanding teaching school in West London to take on a role that I am very proud of, as course leader of the new Citizenship with Social Science PGCE at Kingston University. Whilst I was designing this new Citizenship course at Kingston University, and researching this article, I have reflected on my own training and experiences and also drawn on the voices of others who have shared their reflections on their Citizenship teaching journey. Below, I

have highlighted some of the key themes that came out of these interesting conversations with current teachers. Diversity of Citizenship Specialists Amongst the many idiosyncrasies of Citizenship, it attracts a diverse range of students with various life and educational experiences. Despite teachers coming from a wide range of subject degree backgrounds, a common thread among Citizenship trainees is that they are drawn to the subject by the interesting and relevant topics the Citizenship curriculum provides. Almost all interviewees agreed that Citizenship was a unique subject in the range of contemporary topics and concepts it addresses. No other subject really gets at the heart of modern society the way Citizenship does. It brings questions of social justice, equality, human rights, power and democracy into the | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

classroom and forces students to engage in them in an informed and critical way. Power of the Subject What was unanimous across all the teachers interviewed was their passion for the subject and its scope to empower and transforms young people’s lives. Nick, who is Head of Sociology and Citizenship in a comprehensive school comments what he likes most about Citizenship is that it is ‘a chance to really learn what young people are truly about, as the subject gives them a platform and a chance to speak freely in a way that most others do not.’ He also argues that it is unique because the teacher must be prepared to ‘have your own views and preconceptions challenged and allow yourself to keep learning, just we as we promote to our students.’ This view is echoed by Laura, who works in what she describes as a challenging school, who says that ‘when citizenship is delivered correctly, it impacts students’ lives.’ Laura and many others interviewed were able to list the countless organizations and campaigns that students are still very actively involved in years after the course had finished, such as Amnesty international, UKfeminsita and The Model United Nations General Assembly. Teachers often spoke of students leaving school and applying their skills and understanding to the complex world we live in, showing they believe they have power to affect change. This is where citizenship education does much more than the role of a standard school subject, and becomes an empowering and emancipating tool.


Djamila recalled how her class had been watching a protest video in lesson, and decided to carry on chanting after the lesson, through the hallways, and down the road. A chorus of students could be heard chanting ‘No ifs, No buts. No education cuts!’ from the school gate to down to the local bus stop. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


It is easy to focus on the problems we confront with initial teacher education – we have never trained enough Citizenship specialists, they are no longer paid a bursary, and the number of courses has fallen. However Amit Puni has spoken to a number of colleagues who qualified on Citizenship specialist programmes to gain an insight into how their careers have developed and what the legacy of such specialist training has been. The answers are remarkably uplifting – in terms of the impact these teachers feel they have had on young people, and on their own career prospects. This is a timely reminder of the value of this specialist provision, and a reminder of why we must continue to defend such provision. Luckily, as Amit’s new role attests, there are still some exciting innovations in Citizenship specialist ITE.

Active Citizens Amongst the many great moments I had teaching citizenship over the years, I have to say some of my favourites were the times when students left the class still very much engaged and discussing the topic. Djamila, a Citizenship and PSHE coordinator in a PRU, recalled how her class had been watching a protest video in lesson, and decided to carry on chanting after the lesson, through the hallways, and down the road. A chorus of students could be heard chanting ‘No ifs, No buts. No education cuts!’ from the school gate to down to the local bus stop. This is an example the youthful energy that students bring to the subject. However, as Citizenship teachers we do hold tremendous power given the nature of our subject and how we present the topics. There have been moments when students become quite emotional about a cause or an injustice, and this must be handled with great care and sensitivity, non-specialist teachers can tend to struggle with this aspect of Citizenship. To help students find a cause that resonates with them, and realising their own power to influence change, are key intentions of the active citizenship projects that are run each year by hundreds of young people. There must have been thousands of social action projects that have been completed and supported through the arduous behind the scenes work of Citizenship teachers across the country. Kirsty, a senior leader, spoke with great pride as she shared her story of working with a group of seven, Year 10 boys at GCSE. This group’s target grades were modest, their behavior was such that they had been removed from other GCSE subjects, Teaching Citizenship | 19

Theme Celebrating 17 years of citizenship teacher education: Reflections from citizenship trained teachers

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to organize large projects within school such as, days off timetable for a year group, year group trips, building links with community members and local MPs and organizing guest speakers. All of these events are generally keenly supported by Head-teachers as it raises the profile of the school and tend to be high impact on students. Citizenship projects build your profile within the school, as organizing drop-down days, and school events is great leadership experience as you are working across the school, which is required as you progress in your career. Being a Citizenship teacher and organizing such enrichment for students can equally give you a platform to be noticed. You are having an impact outside of your classroom and are seen to be contributing to the wider school community which is useful for providing evidence for yearly reviews. In addition, being a Citizenship teacher means that you are covering a whole range of evidence for Ofsted, with current agendas of SMSC, and the controversial fundamental British values, and Prevent agenda all linking heavily within the Citizenship curriculum. Outside of the mainstream One of the key strengths of Citizenship is that it often transcends traditional classroom practices. Olly, who trained in Citizenship in 2002, and is currently teaching in Japan, says that ‘the International Baccalaureate’s approach to teaching and learning complimented what I had been doing in Citizenship in the UK. I took on the role of Service Coordinator and was able to put the skills I had learnt in designing and leading active citizenship projects into good use. Here in Japan, I have worked with students in feeding the homeless, cleaning local beaches and volunteering at temples and shrines.’ Although Olly is no longer teaching Citizenship discretely, he like many others who have trained in the subject, but whose journey has taken them into a different direction, still upholds the subject’s ideals. Djamila, who currently works in an alternative educational provision says that her passion for | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

the subject led her away from mainstream and into an alternative education setting, where she has developed an enhanced focus on Citizenship throughout the service. She explains that it is the most vulnerable students who cannot access mainstream education for various reasons that are the most receptive to citizenship education. She says the young people she works with ‘become very politicized through Citizenship. This is due to nature of students within the setting, as a lot of them have a story and background which link to citizenship issues such as bullying, domestic violence, trauma, and LGBT rights. When students see that their experience link to human right injustices such as the right to safety and freedom of expression, they become very aware of the injustices done onto them, and tend to become very politicized and engaged.’ It is a combination of a sense of marginalization, and opportunities to study issues of fairness and rights within the Citizenship curriculum, that is especially useful in helping vulnerable pupils discover their voice, and feel like they are able to participate in society, and stand up for themselves. Changes to over time Despite the changes to the curriculum, revision of the GCSE specifications and pressures of the EBACC, Citizenship is still thriving in many schools today. Djamila reflected on some of the key changes to the curriculum she has seen over the decade she has been teaching Citizenship. ‘During the early days, under a Labour government, the original Citizenship curriculum seemed to have some strong aspects of being critical and challenging the status quo. There is a sense amongst teachers, that under the Tory government, there is more of an emphasis on compliance and toeing the line.’ This can be seen as the role of active citizenship has been de-valued by the new GCSE specifications in favour of a more knowledge-heavy curriculum. However, with the Ofsted agendas of SMSC, FBV, and Prevent Citizenship has found new favour amongst school leaders as it provides a rich source of evidence


Citizenship projects build your profile within the school, as organizing dropdown days, and school events is great leadership experience as you are working across the school… organizing such enrichment for students can equally give you a platform to be noticed. You are having an impact outside of your classroom and are seen to be contributing to the wider school community. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Career Progression Another commonality among the Citizenship teachers I spoke to is that they had gained middle or senior leadership positions shortly after gaining QTS. This may be down to several factors, however Laika and Tim, both senior leaders, gave an interesting insight on how Citizenship provides opportunities to raise your profile within the school. It is likely that you may be the only Citizenship teacher in the school or you may have a small department, therefore there is a lot of scope


There have been moments when students become quite emotional about a cause or an injustice, and this must be handled with great care and sensitivity, non-specialist teachers can tend to struggle with this aspect of Citizenship.


four of the boys had criminal records and many of the teachers deemed them unteachable. Needless to say this was going to be a challenging group! For their active citizenship project, the pupils chose an issue that they felt strongly about, which was the ‘stop and search’ legislation and rights. As part of the process, they interviewed a police officer who had been invited in by Kirsty, and pupils posed some very difficult questions and shared their experiences of the police. The officer told Kirsty she had found the experience difficult but rewarding, and at the end the pupils and the officer both came to a sense of understanding of each other’s position. This resulted in the pupils starting a campaign to educate others within the school about their rights. They presented in school assemblies, and went into lessons to deliver workshops they had designed. The boys all passed and for many it was the only strong GCSE they had completed, however, the real victory was seeing the students passionately engage with a topic that they felt so strongly about. Tim, another senior leader in a secondary school, discussed the diverse and enriching opportunities the subject provides for students. For instance, the various skills that are developed through competitions such as Mock Trials and First Give programs have a real impact on pupil self-esteem and confidence. These active competitions are essential and enriching life experiences which are invaluable to the development of young people.

for compliance with these initiatives. Power of Social Media Several teachers highlighted the growth of social media and its role in politicising young people. The power of twitter, Instagram and various other social media platforms has been used to equip young people with information about the world around them, and there is no denying the impact of social media in contemporary society. Laika, a senior leader in a secondary comprehensive school, explains that students come in informed (or misinformed) about topics very much more than when she began teaching Citizenship. With students now having rapid and easy access to information, it is the role of good Citizenship teachers to be able to equip students with the skills to understand how to interpret the abundance of information available to them at their fingertips at any given time. Another opportunity social media presents is that it is easier to research and find examples of citizenship issues to bring topics to life. Equally, some teachers have also utilised social media to network and share ideas such as Oli who has a successful YouTube channel that has had over 10,000 views around concepts of pedagogy. However, there is clearly some fragmentation and reluctance around using social media in a professional capacity with some citing work life balance, and general workload issues. Future of Citizenship Education in Teacher 3.0. It was truly refreshing and reinvigorating to speak to so many Citizenship teachers and reflect on the subject that brought us into teaching. The very purpose of education is that it ought to equip pupils for the skills to participate fully in democratic life and develop their cognitive, social and cultural competence. This is strikingly similar to the very nature of citizenship education. In the battle for social justice, it has been demonstrated that the ‘quality of classroom teaching has by far the biggest impact on pupils, Teaching Citizenship | 21


Celebrating 17 years of citizenship teacher education: Reflections from citizenship trained teachers

particularly those from poorer homes’ (Sutton Trust, 2015). Therefore, the role of the teacher is vital to ensure that students are able to leave school with essential cognitive skills developed through the curriculum, but also a social and political understanding that are essential to participate in an ever changing and dynamic society. This is yet another reason why strong Citizenship provision, taught by trained specialists is vital. Research has shown the impact of teacher quality on educational outcomes (Hattie 2003, McKinsey Report, 2007). However, less attention is generally given to teachers’ key role in the development of non-cognitive skills (Flèche, 2017) that have a long lasting impact on the social development of students, which Citizenship clearly provides. Teacher Education Exchange’s concept of ‘Teacher Development 3.0’ explores the role universities may play in developing a new model of teacher training that is built upon four key values or principles that underpin this new concept of 3.0 model. The 4 key themes are ‘community teachers’, ‘life-long learners’, ‘cultural or societal development’ and a ‘continuum of professional learning’ (Ellis et al, 2017). Both concepts of ‘cultural and social development’ and of ‘community teachers’ are clearly linked to aspects of Citizenship. The future of Citizenship education according to the model is to place teachers at the very heart of the communities that they work in. This is to try and create more links between schools, pupils and their communities. The very essence of citizenship education is to promote social development so that pupils are able to understand and value the importance of participating in democratic processes and play an active part in social life. There seems to be a real need for strong Citizenship teachers under this new Teacher 3.0 model. The model provides a spark for further conversations about the importance of strong citizenship teaching moving forward.

References Ellis, V. et all (2017). Teacher Development 3.0: How we can transform the professional education of teachers. Teacher Education Exchange, London. Retrieved from files/67207757/tedx_teacher_development_ threepointzero.pdf Flèche, S. (2017). Teacher Quality, Test Scores and Non -Cognitive Skills: Evidence from Primary School Teachers in the UK. Centre for Ec Onomic Performance. Retrieved from pubs/download/dp1472.pdf Hattie, J.A.C. (2003). Teachers make a difference: What is the research evidence? Paper presented at the Building Teacher Quality: What does the research tell us ACER Research Conference, Melbourne, Australia. Retrieved from http:// McKinsey Report (2007) How the World’s Best-Performing School Systems Come out on Top. Retrieved from http://alamin99.wordpress. com/2008/02/22/mckinsey-report/

For further information about the Citizenship with Social Science PGCE see the link below ( secondary-teaching-qts-pgce/), alternatively, you can contact Amit Puni ( 22 | Teaching Citizenship | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Marcus was involved in citizenship initial teacher education from 2002 as a mentor and then on part-time secondment for three years to Institute of Education. He went on to lead London Metropolitan University’s Citizenship PGCE from 2007-2013. He is Head of School of Education at Kingston University and launched a brand new Citizenship and Social Sciences PGCE in 2017.

20 years on: In celebration of the citizenship teacher educator Marcus Bhargava

In this article Marcus Bhargava draws on the experiences of a range of teacher educators to reflect on the challenges, and lessons learned, from starting up a subject specialism almost from scratch. This captures some of the exciting opportunities afforded by the introduction of Citizenship to the national curriculum, and illustrates some of the wider impact of the subject. Amit Puni’s article in this edition focuses on the careers of some of the students who passed through the courses described here, and the two articles together focus on some of the positive stories to emerge over the past two decades. Introduction This article is a celebration of Citizenship initial teacher educators who have led ITE courses over the last seventeen years. It’s my belief that without the vanguard of the Citizenship teacher educators, the subject would have found it almost impossible to make the gains of the last twenty years even if these seem rather modest now. Why? Because they’ve enabled student teachers to interpret and successfully teach, lead and innovate in a new subject with transformative intentions but in contexts that haven’t always been conducive to making those a reality. In this article I explore the experiences of seven Citizenship teacher educators including my own, based upon interviews and correspondence. Some specific areas include our role in defining the subject and shaping its pedagogy, the distinctiveness of Citizenship student teachers and their partnerships with schools and other colleagues. I also asked them to reflect on their own developing subject identities. What emerges are interesting similarities in experience and also a strong sense that our professional practice has been enriched by our collaborations to drive the


Citizenship initial teacher educators enabled student teachers to interpret and successfully teach, lead and innovate in a new subject with transformative intentions but in contexts that haven’t always been conducive to making those a reality. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47



subject forward, despite (or perhaps because of ) the considerable challenges we’ve faced. Citizenship initial teacher education Interestingly, The Crick Report did not call for discrete citizenship ITE courses, instead recommending that ‘due regard [be paid] to the importance of Citizenship in defining expectations’ in the QTS standards so trainees would have the knowledge, understanding and skills to teach the subject. DfEE was asked to consider increasing places on other ITE courses, for instance in social sciences, to ‘add to the numbers of teacher most appropriately qualified to teach Citizenship’ (QCA/DfEE, 1998). This reflected some of the group’s unease with adding another subject to the curriculum and a desire to let schools interpret Citizenship locally. Nevertheless, the first Citizenship ITE courses were launched in 2001 providing a few trained Citizenship teachers for the subject’s launch in 2002. Citizenship rapidly became an oversubscribed ITE course and remained so until 2010 when the impact of uncertainty about the subject’s survival, the removal of bursaries and the Teaching Citizenship | 23

Theme 20 years on: In celebration of the citizenship teacher educator

24 | Teaching Citizenship


Citizenship teacher educators had plenty of scope to shape and define how the subject could be taught. Ralph Leighton saw it as ‘a privilege to be in on the ground floor and make a contribution to shaping the subject’

learning” because of his own primary background. We’ve also been keen to promote alternative pedagogical practices. Lee Jerome (Anglia Ruskin University, 2003-7) was excited by Crick’s antipathy towards text books. Jerome explains, “Crick feared that focusing on text books would kill the subject and whilst I recognise he was sometimes overly optimistic, on this I was pleased to promote the message”. Supporting new teachers to teach through topical and controversial issues has also required teacher educators to develop techniques to model this. For instance, Hayward developed a ‘silent debate’ technique to overcome difficulties his students were having with traditional classroom debates. Jerome moved from promoting a value-neutral position to one in which teachers could be more upfront and robust about defending the values of democracy. The launch of the second national curriculum programme of study for Citizenship coincided with my arrival at London Met. There was much optimism in the air; the subject was growing strongly with high quality applicants for training, the GCSE short course helped encourage school managers to take the subject seriously and the new curricular requirements better reflected Crick’s vision. Mark 2 Citizenship also meant spending longer unpacking the more explicitly defined concepts and processes in the subject. James Wright (London Met, 2013-15; Harris ITE 2017-present) trained in 2007-8 and appreciated the focus on conceptual knowledge that his training gave him, explaining “the current curriculum is ‘knowledge rich’ on the surface but it was that 2008 curriculum which had the depth. It gave me a stronger knowledge base and gave me confidence to | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

recognise good Citizenship”. Conversely, our teacher educators feel the latest curriculum has been a major step backwards and has made it harder to deliver the subject envisioned by Crick. Uniqueness of the Citizenship student teacher The Crick Report recommended ITE providers ‘give greater emphasis in their selection procedures to applicants’ experience and understanding of citizenship activities, particularly those relating to community involvement’. Citizenship ITE has managed to attract a diverse set of applicants, including many from degree backgrounds that wouldn’t have enabled them to join other courses; for Jerome this is an “important legacy of the subject”. It’s been quite common to find a mixture of students from subjects as different as politics, law, psychology and community studies on the same programme. Many have brought with them experience of engagement in youth work and community action which has enriched their teaching especially in active citizenship. Baldwin has fond memories of recruiting students in the early days “with great imagination and passion”. As a mentor in school, I was impressed with the refreshing way that the students approached teaching, being far more experimental. They brought the subject alive, challenging me to re-think my own teaching. It was easy to make the case for a specialist department because senior management were impressed with what they saw. However, not all student teachers had positive experiences. In the early days Hayward explained how it was all too common for students to be asked to “write all the schemes of work for the


We didn’t need to teach traditional subject recognition rules’ Jeremy explained ‘because it was more than just a subject. I wanted my students to be avant garde!’ | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Defining the subject Citizenship was to be a subject guided by bold aims to change the political culture of the nation, but the curriculum was designed to be flexibly interpreted by schools. It didn’t have a disciplinary tradition like other subjects such as history which teacher educators could latch onto. So this gave Citizenship teacher educators plenty of scope to shape and define how the subject could be taught. Ralph Leighton (Canterbury Christ Church University, 2002-present) saw it as “a privilege to be in ‘on the ground floor’ and make a contribution to shaping the subject”. Some course leaders decided to have a particular flavour to their programmes, for instance rooting them in civic republicanism or communitarian models. Jeremy Hayward (Institute of Education 2001-present) rejected this approach because he wanted his course to be a place where “the nature of the subject and its aims could be hotly discussed and where pedagogies for teaching could evolve over time” He loosely framed his course, believing it was for his students to shape the subject. “We didn’t need to teach traditional subject recognition rules” Jeremy explained “because it was more than just a subject. I wanted my students to be avant garde!” Gavin Baldwin (Middlesex University, 200217) enjoyed helping students and other teachers find ways to make the curriculum orders a reality in schools, seeing it as the most interesting aspect of his work early on. He also welcomed the “interdisciplinary possibilities that Citizenship offered and the possibility for student centred


increase in fees to £9000 all had a major negative impact on applications and recruitment.

department, or to photocopy all their lessons and pass them on to other teachers”. Kerr (IOE 2001-2; Bristol 2013-16) suggests that Citizenship student teachers have always had to be “armed with amazing resilience in the face of snobbish attitudes, ignorance about the subject and often contempt”. This resilience has often enabled his former students to take up the fight for Citizenship and because they’ve managed to win in their schools, “they’ve gained incredible respect”. Citizenship student teachers nearly always teach other subjects and this gives them a flexibility that schools seem to appreciate when offering first jobs. At Bristol, Kerr had his student teachers list all the areas they’d taught and supported with over the year so they could compare, contrast and offer advice and support to their peers for their future jobs. These days all too few get to teach their subject as a major part (or even any part) of their teaching although for Leighton he doesn’t have a problem with students seeing Citizenship as stepping stone to social science teaching at KS5. Jerome’s History with Citizenship PGCE attracted those who were mainly interested in their major subject and this meant that “some felt compelled to keep up the impression of a dual interest”. However, he found that many of those did end up with responsibility for Citizenship later on and so he came to see his course as “setting up sleeper cells of Citizenship expertise, ready to emerge from deep cover when the opportunity arose”. For Wright, the loss of Citizenship trained teachers to other social science areas need not be a problem providing the link to the subject community can be maintained because these teachers can find other ways to develop a citizenship culture in their schools. Teaching Citizenship | 25

Theme 20 years on: In celebration of the citizenship teacher educator

26 | Teaching Citizenship


Many exciting ‘drop-down days’ have been planned by our student teachers and these have often been a favourite part of the job. For Leighton, these days helped to show colleagues in schools ‘how creative citizenship education can be, and how talented their own pupils were when presented with appropriate content and context’


Working with schools Another common experience has been the challenge of finding Citizenship placements. Kerr highlights the particular challenge in 2001-2, before the subject was statutory, where students “were dropped in wherever there was a space from Luton to Shoreham-on-Sea”. Once placements were found, Leighton suggests the challenge then was “persuading schools that what they thought was Citizenship had little to do with the National Curriculum or Crick”. Baldwin concurs, arguing this has been an ongoing challenge although “that in itself has been exciting”. In those early days, I enjoyed working with non-subject mentors to help them understand the subject and its pedagogy and it was always gratifying when they began to apply these to their own subject areas. Pride is a word used to describe the feeling of working with former students as they moved into mentoring and leadership roles. For me, the enhanced dialogue with subject specialist mentors meant we were able to stretch student teachers far more by encouraging them to take greater risks. It also revealed the extent to which our alumni were developing in their own teaching or in some cases developing a vision for their own new departments. A highlight for Kerr was when a former student from his Bristol course became a mentor, then head of department and then staffed his entire department with former students from the Bristol course. We’ve often provided training for whole departments, helping non-specialists to understand knowledge and pedagogy and this often permeated other subject areas too. Hayward argues that

Citizenship was an “early adopter” of assessment for learning strategies such as peer and selfassessment. “We were a breath of fresh air, we could adopt Freirean pedagogy” claims Hayward and the fact that Citizenship student teachers were thinking more deeply about learning was being positively recognised by schools. Many exciting ‘drop-down days’ have been planned by our student teachers and these have often been a favourite part of the job. My students planned and delivered whole days on crime, democracy, diversity and children’s rights at a number of schools. Hayward’s student teachers planned a whole day at one school on whether there should be a salary cap. For Leighton, these days helped to show colleagues in schools “how creative citizenship education can be, and how talented their own pupils were when presented with appropriate content and context”. Collaborating with others Citizenship teacher educators have relished the opportunity to collaborate with others to offer unique experiences for our new teachers and, in turn, this has enriched our practice. For instance, Baldwin was inspired by working with Jan Pimblett at London Metropolitan Archives and Pippa Couch at the National Portrait Gallery. He also enjoyed the annual Diversity conference for PGCE students at Middlesex, Institute of Education and London Met which ran for many years. Others cited the fantastic learning offered by Parliamentary Education Service, CND and other museums, libraries and galleries which have opened student teachers’ minds to the impact of learning outside the classroom. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

We have also enhanced the wider teacher education in our institutions. For instance it’s been common for Citizenship student teachers to deliver professional studies sessions to other subject areas and this has moved from educating peers about what Citizenship is, to other areas such as fundamental British values and Prevent. At London Met, we became a Rights Respecting ITE Provider in 2008 and this meant rights had to be embedded across our courses. This meant that our professional dialogue with students shifted, because every issue of professional practice had to be explored through a rights lens. It also led to some unique collaborations, for instance between Citizenship and languages student teachers delivering Citizenship drop-down days in schools around rights issues. Leighton continues to work with colleagues to embed Citizenship in all subject areas and his research and collaboration with colleagues in Europe has given him a much wider perspective about the subject. However, not all experiences of working with others outside the community have been positive. Hayward still feels scarred by the time when he introduced himself at an INSET for a different subject association and got booed simply because he was a Citizenship educationalist! Reflecting on the journey and the future So how have our views and subject identities changed over time? Hayward says that he now believes in the vital importance of ‘epistemic virtue’. “We aren’t there to make better opinions”, he explains, “we are there to develop criticality and to develop an understanding of the virtue of being open-minded and changing your mind”. Leighton | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

still sees himself as a “grumpy old(er) renegade but one who identifies with Citizenship rather than sociology”. Baldwin’s believes he now has a sense of ‘citizenship as a spiritual activity’ because of the connections he’s made between active citizenship, arts and the humanities. For me, I’ve moved from seeing political education as in itself liberating to believing that Citizenship must play a bigger role in re-engaging communities with schools. Inevitably, there’s been a long winter for Citizenship teacher educators. The removal of the bursary, uncertainty about the subject’s survival and the fall in schools offering the subject have all had a profound impact. We’ve gone from nationally training around 250 students per year in 2010 across 13 providers with heavily oversubscribed courses to fewer than 50 being trained in the five remaining providers in 2016/17. Leighton doubts Citizenship ITE can survive unless the government offers bursaries in the subject again. However, Hayward suggests that everything could easily change very quickly, because Citizenship is so affected by wider government policy. He feels the growing support for ‘votes at 16’ could re-focus attention again on the subject, in a similar way to fundamental British values. Similarly, Jerome feels that because the subject is “an important place where valuable aspects of educational thinking continue to be developed (project based learning; active community engagement; experiential learning etc.)”, when Citizenship’s time comes around again “we’ll have a lot more of value to share with others”. Let’s hope the few providers left can hang on that long. Teaching Citizenship | 27

Theme Liz Moorse is Chief Executive at ACT. Contact her at:

It’s a great time to look forward! In this article Liz Moorse reflects on the first 20 years of citizenship education in the wake of the 1998 Crick Report and sets out plans for refreshing ACT and taking forward the subject of Citizenship. Liz outlines the current strategic planning priorities for ACT and invites all members to respond with questions, advice, or suggestions for additional ideas to develop. All readers will have their own views about what would help move things on where they work, as well as stories about what has worked locally – all input is helpful at this stage as Liz and the team start to flesh out these plans.

28 | Teaching Citizenship

working as part of central government and now at ACT. So, I think this is also a great moment for us to think about the future together, to consider where we are going both as a subject community, and charity and what we need to do to ensure there are more great Citizenship teachers in the future so that young people continue to benefit from citizenship education. Over the past 6 months we have been discussing what is next for ACT, how we use our (let’s face it tiny) resource to develop our offer, to better meet the needs and challenges schools face, to reach more teachers, to take the opportunities we have to influence and use education policy to support Citizenship citizenship education, and to try to have even provides a chance greater impact. to really learn what young people Celebrate the successes are truly about, as Citizenship teaching and ACT have come a long the subject gives way, and we have learned a lot along the way. It them a platform was naive to ever think that because Citizenship and a chance to became a National Curriculum subject in 2002 speak freely in the journey would be easy. We have a lot more a way that most to do but in the past few years, together we have others do not. successfully: • Campaigned to retain Citizenship in the National Curriculum and as a GCSE qualification. • Supported existing and new teachers working



uch is being said in this issue of ‘Teaching Citizenship’ about 2018 marking 20 years of Citizenship education in England. This is an important moment and shows the resilience of the subject and the subject community of teachers despite some challenging circumstances. From my perspective having worked at the national level, first with Bernard Crick and David Kerr in 1997 on the rationale and vision for Citizenship and democracy education in schools with the Advisory Group, and then on creating the policy and implementation programme for Citizenship in England – it is interesting to consider what has and what has not changed since that time. While the policy context has not changed, in one sense at least – that is Citizenship remains a National Curriculum subject and GCSE qualification – and the need for citizenship education seems ever greater, the education landscape (academisation, free schools, Ebacc, many routes to teacher training etc) is very different from 1998. But we should take heart from the fact that there really is no substitute for great teachers who are passionate about their subject and the reasons for being a Citizenship teacher. I’ve certainly relied on many such teachers over the years to help me do my roles both when | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

with thousands of pupils in schools across the country. • Contributed to Ministerial and Departmental policy discussions on: Prevent (Home Office); RSE/PSHE, fundamental British Values and teacher training (DFE); and re-engaging young people in democracy as part of the Democratic Engagement Strategy and celebration of the 100th anniversary of extending suffrage (Cabinet Office). • Collaborated with new partners on projects such as the DFE funded Deliberative Classroom project to create classroom debate resources on topical issues with the English-Speaking Union and Middlesex University and on the dissemination of the Robert Kennedy Speak Truth to Power Human Rights Curriculum. • Developed longstanding relationships for example with the Parliament Education Service as a Parliament Week partner and more generally. • Cemented work on Citizenship and Values education across the UK and Ireland via the Five Nations Network and annual conference with support from the Gordon Cook Foundation. • Established our quality awards in the form of the ACT Citizenship Standard for Schools and, more recently, Colleges to recognise excellence in the curriculum, culture and community of schools; and through our Quality Mark for teacher resources where we use an independent panel to evaluate the quality of citizenship education resources. • Enhanced our work to provide membership advice, support and training with new regional Teachmeets in Manchester and London and a new targeted training offer for those using GCSE Citizenship Studies. • Improved this journal ‘Teaching Citizenship’ and continued to develop our website and online offer.

We have discussed and developed ideas for the next five years in the form of our new ACT strategic plan with help from our Council and Board of Trustees. Now it is time to share these ideas more widely and seek your input. Our Values Our values as an organisation have always been clear and are embodied in the way we work: we are open, democratic, collaborative and ethical. Equality and justice are at the heart of what we do. We work efficiently to make the best of scarce resources in Our vision is the interests of members and the wider community. for a strong We are inclusive and seek strong and lasting and vibrant relationships with like-minded organisations. democracy enhanced by Our Vision young people who Our new vision statement sets out the difference are educated in we want to make: the Citizenship “Our vision is for a strong and vibrant knowledge, democracy enhanced by young people who understanding, are educated in the Citizenship knowledge, skills and understanding, skills and experience they need experience they to play an effective role as active citizens; and need to play who, together, can take action to create a more an effective equal, fair and just society for all.” We have a long-term strategy to embed high role as active quality Citizenship curricula in schools and citizens; and who, colleges which we see as the only systematic way to together, can take try to ensure every child and young person receives action to create a good Citizenship education which empowers them more equal, fair with the knowledge, understanding and skills they and just society need to be effective democratic citizens. It is, we for all. believe, the only way to secure a right to quality citizenship education and to ensure every child can develop as a successful learner, confident individual and responsible, active citizen.

Where next? Our key priority is to ensure that all Citizenship teachers and educators can access the information, advice and guidance needed to help you work effectively in your role and to support high quality citizenship education for more children and young people. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47



Liz Moorse

The difference we want to make We have developed our theory of change to set out the impact we want to see and how we will achieve these goals. This is built around the established evidence base that the best citizenship education is found in schools and colleges where the subject is embedded in the curriculum, the culture and the community of the school or college. Teaching Citizenship | 29

Theme It’s a great time to look forward!

1 What are we trying to achieve?

A strong and vibrant democracy enhanced by young people with the Citizenship knowledge, understanding, skills and experience to play a full and active part in society as democratic citizens High quality Citizenship curricula and confident, trained Citizenship teachers

So we need

to develop students as

Successful learners

Confident individuals

Responsible, active citizens

The curriculum comprises all learning and other experiences that each school or college plans for students.

2 How can high quality Citizenship education be organised?

3 What are we going to do and how will we know we are achieving our aims?

A whole school approach involving curriculum, culture and community Diverse planned teaching and learning approaches

to meet Statutory Citizenship National Curriculum for every student

To achieve our vision we will:

Impact for young people

Curriculum Discrete Citizenship Lessons

Links with other subjects

Culture British Values, SMSC

Ethos and envronment

Student voice

Community Student council

Citizenship events and days

Community Activity and links


Citizenship knowledge & concepts

Citizenship skills

Citizenship experiences

(power, democracy, freedom, rights, equality, rule of law) e.g. political, legal & economic knowledge, understanding how to contribute to democratic society

e.g. think critically, research, weigh evidence, debate & deliberate political questions, take informed action

in the school and wider community eg. commitment to take part in democracy, confidence to speak out, challenge injustice

1: Build capacity so that more teachers become knowledgeable, confident teachers of Citizenship Improved engagement, behavior, attendance

2: Support and improve the quality of Citizenship provision in more schools and colleges Enhanced Political literacy (knowledge & understanding)

3: Increase the pool of Citizenship education expertise

Commitment to Civic and democratic, engagement & participation

Improved Social cohesion

4. Secure greater public understanding and policy support for Citizenship education Greater resilience to extremism, critical media literacy

Priorities We are building our plans for the next five years around 4 strategic priorities to help us achieve this vision: 1. Build capacity so that more teachers become knowledgeable, confident teachers of Citizenship who can inspire, motivate and challenge children and young people to learn and achieve their best in the subject by promoting excellence through online and offline training and CPD.

2. S upport and improve the quality of Citizenship provision in more schools and colleges to develop curricula that reflect the essential knowledge, understanding and skills needed to become confident, active and empowered citizens and through our Quality Standard for Schools and Colleges and our Quality Mark for teaching resources and publications.

3. Increase the pool of Citizenship education expertise by establishing ACT Teaching Ambassadors, new regional networks of teaching experts and mentors, as well as academics and supporters across the regions of the country.

4. Secure greater public understanding and policy support for Citizenship education so that the aims, role and contribution of the subject is more clearly understood and valued.

30 | Teaching Citizenship | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

2. Support and improve the quality of Citizenship provision in more schools and colleges by extending our reach and impact through a new interactive digital platform. We want to maximise the opportunities offered through technology by offering more than a simple channel for communication and passive knowledge sharing. We plan to build an interactive online platform that will support the development and growth of individual Citizenship teachers and schools and colleges as organisations. In order to do this, ACT will develop an interactive resource for Citizenship teachers. This will include: • a self-review tool based on the ‘ACT Citizenship Quality Standard’, set out as a four-stage maturity model; • a tailored report and action plan based upon their stage of maturity as shown by the selfreview; • resources, activities and tools that will help them make progress to the next stage of development. We have identified a partner agency and digital platform provider to work with us using an existing platform that will help us to maximise the return on investment. 3. Increase the pool of Citizenship education expertise by establishing regional networks of ACT Teaching Ambassadors. Our Teaching Ambassador project aims to build a regional network of committed and expert Citizenship subject leaders who can work together to support teachers and teaching in their own and


There really is no substitute for great teachers who are passionate about their subject and the reasons for being a Citizenship teacher.


Our values as an organisation have always been clear and are embodied in the way we work: we are open, democratic, collaborative and ethical. Equality and justice are at the heart of what we do. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Our vision

Actions We are now working hard to secure the funding we need to help us take this plan forward in a number of ways: 1. Build capacity so that more teachers become knowledgeable, confident teachers of Citizenship by creating innovative continuing professional development (CPD) and training materials. We are developing a plan to work regionally across the country with identified partners to support teachers in schools with a 12-month Citizenship CPD programme. During the year, one day courses will be interspersed with interventions and pedagogical approaches that teachers try out in their classrooms. The aim is to increase teachers’ confidence, enhance their subject knowledge and build capacity to work effectively with their students.


ACT: Our Theory of Change

Three key questions

other local schools and colleges. The principal aims of the scheme are to build a community of expertise and to empower and reward our most able Citizenship leaders and teachers to support colleagues locally. To do this, ACT will: • establish a pilot with six teachers in 2018 to evaluate our plans; • develop and grow the number of ambassadors in each region of the country; • build a supportive structure for those in role with appropriate resources and tools; • continue to support local and regional teachmeets on topics that meet member needs. Some Ambassadors will also have a role on the CPD programme and take part in the Quality Standard described above. 4. Secure greater public understanding and policy support for Citizenship education by seeking new opportunities to use our expertise in influencing decision makers and education leaders. ACT was founded in 2001 at a time of optimism that, at last, Citizenship education was getting the centre stage in government policy that it deserves. Since that time there has been less consistency in how the curriculum, including the subject of Citizenship, is supported and resourced. This makes our policy influencing work even more critical today. We are the voice of Citizenship representing teacher and educators involved in Citizenship education. We have worked strategically and collaboratively to seek opportunities to move the national conversation about Citizenship education forward. We are regularly asked for our expert advice; we draw on research and insights from members, Council and more widely to provide a secure evidence base for this. We meet with Civil Servants, Ofsted and Ministers regularly to discuss Citizenship. The DFE has just confirmed my appointed to be the UK’s representative at a new Council of Europe Education Policy Advice Network on Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights. So, our policy influencing role is set to continue. Of course, none of this is possible without the support of teachers and members and help from our supporters and partners. So please do take the opportunity to tell us what you think of these plans. To read and comment on the full draft ACT Strategic Plan see Teaching Citizenship | 31


Harriet Andrews is the founder and Director of The Politics Project,

Building a better democracy - how technology can bring young people and politicians together Harriet Andrews

Digital Surgeries What we came up with was the Digital Surgeries programme, a new methodology for bringing 32 | Teaching Citizenship


A repetitive formula had been established: politician comes into school and gives an inaccessible speech. This is followed by Q and A from students on a random selection of issues. Both groups politely stand for a quick photo-op and go their separate ways.


At the start of 2017 we started running a new programme called Digital Surgeries, set up to address a key issue that defines our democratic system today: the breakdown in the relationship between young people and politicians. Through our other youth democratic engagement work we had lots of experience of bringing together students and politicians and found a repetitive formula had been established: politician comes into school and gives jargon-heavy and often inaccessible speech. This is followed by Q and A from students on a random selection of issues not necessarily related to work of the politician. Both groups politely stand for a quick photo-op for the school magazine and the local party newsletter and go their separate ways, duties complete, rarely to think too much about the other again. We increasingly started to view these interactions as a wasted opportunity to strengthen ties between these two groups and to enhance the education of students. Politicians are subject experts in political structures, campaigning and have a very detailed knowledge of the local area they represent. We felt strongly that if we could improve these interactions they could be a huge asset to anyone delivering democratic education.

young people and politicians together for a more meaningful interaction. We replaced face to face interactions with virtual ones we call Digital Surgeries, typically a 45 minute conversation that takes place between a class of young people and a politician via Skype or Zoom. Crucially, prior to each engagement students complete 3 hours of preparatory workshops during which they learn about political structures, research the politician they will be meeting and prepare questions. We have designed these to align with existing subjects (including Citizenship) and they can be delivered flexibly in a drop-down day or just slotted in to a scheme of work. The programme is delivered by teachers and supported by us. We provide training and teaching resources as well as arranging surgeries and coming into school to support with any technical issues. Once a teacher has completed their first successful surgery they are ‘Digital Surgeries Trained’ and are free to deliver the programme independently, they just tell us when they want to arrange a surgery and we book it in. Why Digital? Initially we decided to go digital because it was so much easier for everyone. Schools didn’t need to “roll out the red carpet” and politicians didn’t have to travel. It also created an opportunity to work with MPs on the days they are in Westminster | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

giving us four more teaching days to arrange surgeries in a typical week. However, digital ended up being a fantastic tool for engaging less confident students. One student told us “Everyone is honest, no one is nervous and it is less awkward”. Students are able to take part in a setting they were comfortable with and in a collective group with their peers. They had also prepared for the conversation, which equipped them with knowledge and confidence. This all helps to decrease the power imbalance that often exists between young people and politicians and creates space for a more equal engagement. For students, the programme is real and practical, providing a purpose to learn about political structures, often viewed as an abstract and dry topic to teach. Teachers have used the programme as a taster for new students, as a revision tool at the end of a module or to enhance GCSE Citizenship projects. On several occasions the surgeries have led to real life changes in students’ local communities and these instances have allowed teachers to emphasise the purpose of Citizenship education and to motivate students. Several students have described the programme as the highlight of their course. Intriguingly, the format also seems to make politicians more open. Despite the digital nature, surgeries can feel quite intimate, and politicians answer honestly and more directly than they usually do. To date, we have worked with a range of local, regional and national politicians including Mayor Andy Burnham and Nicky Morgan MP and all of them have expressed a wish to take part again. We are hoping to give schools access to several senior politicians over the next few months – check out Twitter feed for details of who we have coming up. The programme has also have an impressive impact. 90% of students felt that the programme | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


We came up with the Digital Surgeries programme, a new methodology for bringing young people and politicians together for a more meaningful interaction.


In this article Harriet Andrews shares an exciting new development on a familiar encounter. By using technology to set up virtual meetings between young people and politicians The Politics Project is both extending the opportunities for young people to get to know their representatives, but also expanding the chances that such encounters are productive. The early evidence suggests these straightforward ideas can help build trust, motivation and engagement (and teachers avoid the hassle of the disruptive VIP visit to school).

increased their understanding of the UK political system, 92% felt that the programme helped to develop their oracy skills and 93% their critical thinking skills. Prior to the programme only 22% had taken part in political activities; following the programme 70% wanted to engage further. Students’ negative attitudes towards politicians softened over the programme and there was a 21% increase in the likelihood of voting. This year we are running a special thematic version of the programme called Talking Gender to align with the anniversary of women’s suffrage. This will prepare students for a conversation about gender and representation with a politician and be supported by a range a teaching resources. The programme will be available across the UK and will be free for the majority for schools. For information and to sign up, please visit: “Digital Surgeries has been an amazing experience for my students. The process is thorough and develops students’ knowledge of how politicians have a say on a local, national and an international level. It gives them a hands on understanding of actively engaging with our elected representatives and helps them to come up with relevant and worthwhile questions. Students explored a huge range of topics, ones which they themselves had researched and, with a deeper understanding of the representative on the screen, they were able to engage in an informative dialogue. All my students have spoken of the value of the experience and how they believed that it had helped them to feel more involved in the political process.” Emily Bowyer, Head of PSHE and Citizenship at Altrincham Girls School

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Greg Sanderson is Co-Founder of Smart School Councils, a charity that works in 360 schools across the world to embed a new system of pupil voice. For more information visit; and to try the Class Meeting Tool visit:

School councils - what’s the point? Greg Sanderson

My starting point School councils have been a common sight in our schools since the early 2000’s. Latest figures suggest that they exist in around 90% of schools, giving young people their first taste of democracy and active citizenship. But is that first taste of democracy a positive one? And what do they actually teach young people? Having worked with hundreds of school councils over the years, I’m more and more sceptical about their value. I’ve begun to think that they actually limit opportunities for active citizenship and social action in schools. Here’s why.

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A school council acting purely as a consultation or management tool isn’t enough. It’s been said before, but young people should be considered active leaders in their education rather than passive consumers.


The ‘why’ A useful starting point is to think about why your school has a school council. Surprisingly few schools consider this question, which is slightly odd given how popular they are. I can see how it happens. The role is quite often dumped on a member of staff at the last minute, alongside a folder of school council minutes dating back to 2009. You’re unlikely to take a step back and reflect on the ‘why’ if it’s your job just to keep it going. Honestly though, what’s the point of the whole thing? Is your school council there to represent students and give them a voice? Do you have a school council because you’ve always had one, and pretty much every other school has one too? Or is it because it’s a useful way to find out what pupils want, check how satisfied they are, and make the school a better place?

As individuals interested in citizenship, I think you might agree with me – a school council acting purely as a consultation or management tool isn’t enough. It’s been said before, but young people should be considered active leaders in their education rather than passive consumers. After all, a school isn’t a shop or a factory, it’s a school. A place where pupils go to learn. This links to some interesting research from the Open University released in February ( It showed that student satisfaction is ‘unrelated’ to learning behaviour and academic performance. Though it looked at university students, it showed that satisfaction levels often tell us very little about how well an education institution is performing. So what should school councils be about? Alongside a growing number of schools that we work with, I believe that school councils are about learning. The simple idea that pupils who take part in school council or active citizenship activities can learn lots of really useful skills. Skills like empowerment, confidence, teamwork and oracy. Accepting this idea leads us to some curious places. The first, and most important, is about who is involved. If school councils help pupils to learn useful skills, which pupils should get to learn them? Hopefully this is a rhetorical question. It should be all of them, right? This is a useful point to reflect on. How well does your school council give every pupil in your school the ability to develop these skills? I’d argue that electing a small group of fifteen pupils who get to be involved in your school | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

council isn’t really good enough. Especially when the pupils who tend to get involved are often the ones who are already confident and articulate. We shouldn’t be delivering activities in school that we say are open to everyone, but in practice give more skills to the pupils who need them the least. Next, there’s the interesting question about the success and failure of projects that pupils might run. If learning and skills development are what we’re aiming for, does it really matter if pupilled projects are a success or a failure? I’d argue it doesn’t. Useful learning could come from a successful or a failed project, assuming there’s reflection built into the process. The third point highlights the problem with representative systems. A traditional school council puts up a whole bunch of barriers to pupils who might want to learn skills, use their voice or take part in social action. 98% of pupils are reduced to voting once a year to give power away. If you’re a shy pupil in Year 4 or Year 7, you’re unlikely to put yourself forward for election. And if you give an idea to your class representative, you’re lucky if you hear anything about it again. Representative systems that mimic adult meetings will also only attract certain pupils. I’d find a meeting to discuss a Health and Safety Policy pretty boring, and I’m pretty sure you would too. How interested would you be if you’re eight years old? We all recognise where things end up. A small group of pupils who get elected, decide on which projects to do AND do them. What does this achieve if we’re aiming to develop skills for active citizenship in all? By giving our brightest pupils a chance to play at being politicians, we simply fence off learning opportunities to anyone else. It’s hardly surprising that research for the Children’s Commissioner showed that only 2 in 5 pupils felt that their school council listened to them (https:// So what’s going wrong? | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Maybe we don’t actually need to replicate the Westminster system. The system exists because we can’t fit 70 million people in a room – do we need to do the same in our school of 200 or 2,000?


Greg Sanderson poses some important questions about how we ‘do’ school councils and what they are for. His answers have led him to help schools to improve the way they use them as ways to learn about democratic participation.

Blame Well, there’s some good news. It’s not your school’s fault. It is really hard to engage beyond the usual suspects, especially when you’ve got limited time and a million other things to do. I would argue that that the problem is the model itself. Communication is always a challenge. It’s incredibly difficult to get class meetings happening regularly and consistently across the school. Pupils often forget what’s been talked about at school council meetings, and struggle to represent anyone’s ideas but their own. The small group of elected students tend to just get on with their projects, and everyone else who’s voted them in forget about them. ‘But that’s what happens in Westminster!’ I can hear you shout. Isn’t this model a fantastic introduction to how politics and democracy really work? Well, again – let’s return to the learning point. Maybe we shouldn’t replicate democratic systems that give power to the few, when we’re trying to develop the skills of everyone. Also, we don’t teach pupils poor English because lots of people don’t construct sentences correctly. We teach them Shakespeare. Why can’t we do same with democracy? Also, maybe we don’t actually need to replicate the Westminster system. The system exists because we can’t fit 70 million people in a room – do we need to do the same in our school of 200 or 2,000? Alternative Thinking back to what we’d like to achieve - to involve every pupil in learning and developing skills for active citizenship - let’s think about what an alternative model should look like. The first principle is an obvious one. It should involve every pupil in a school. Not just a few. We want every young person to feel like they have a stake in their school community, so they all Teaching Citizenship | 35

Feature School councils - what’s the point?

for those projects to fail, will do much more to empower pupils. And it’s much better than the old school council running a single project at a time (that was actually done by the teacher because they couldn’t afford for it to fail and look bad in front of the head). Connections We needn’t think about a new approach in isolation. There are other useful connections that can be made (and boxes that need to be ticked). Citizenship is an obvious one. I’m always amazed at the number of schools who fail to make the connection between school councils and citizenship. It’s great to show how an open, universal, democratic structure can support active citizenship for all. It’s also useful to link it with oracy. The fantastic LKMco report ‘The State of Speaking in Our Schools’ ( showed that schools think oracy is important, but still often struggle with a comprehensive approach to involving pupils. Holding regular class meetings with a clear, pupil-led structure where everyone is practising their discussion skills is a great way to address this. And for those schools in England, whatever we think of British Values, expanding your school council beyond 15 pupils is a great way to prove to Ofsted how you’re helping more pupils experience democracy. So what? If you’re looking for a few practical steps, I’d start by suggesting that you go back to your school and ask ‘Why do we have a school council?’ Do your colleagues agree it’s about learning? If so, ask who should access that learning, and how well your current structure delivers against that aim. Change the role of your school council to be about involving others rather than doing everything themselves. Also open up the opportunity to start projects, clubs or activities to those who want to do them – not just those who’ve been elected. And let them fail if the pupils don’t put the effort in! And if you’ve got time, take a look at what we’re up to with our charity Smart School Councils. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Case study: Smart School Council at Hillview Primary School My name is Tracie Thompson and I am the School Council Co-Ordinator at Hillview Primary School in Gloucester. We have been running a Smart School Council at Hillview since 2015 and it has made a huge impact on the effectiveness of our school council. Before starting our Smart School Council we had two school council members per class who would meet regularly and discuss various school matters. We found that this was a limiting system as only these 14 pupils were involved and the majority of the school had no ownership of the school council. We wanted to explore a different way of running our school council to allow all children to have a voice and the Smart School Council model was a fantastic way of achieving this.


We have been running a Smart School Council at Hillview since 2015 and it has made a huge impact on the effectiveness of our school council. We wanted to explore a different way of running our school council to allow all children to have a voice and the Smart School Council model was a fantastic way of achieving this.


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A traditional school council puts up a whole bunch of barriers to pupils who might want to learn skills, use their voice or take part in social action. 98% of pupils are reduced to voting once a year to give power away.


need to be involved in decisions and developing skills as a result. One way to start doing that is to change your current school council from a team who do everything, to a team whose job it is to help and involve others. We don’t want to put off these students – they’re likely to be great communicators, so get them communicating and involving. Work out a big range of ways that they can do that – posters, assemblies, social media, school council surgery – since each communication method won’t reach everyone. We call this group a Communication Team, and usually it’s easy to change your current school council into this. Every class or form participating in short, pupilled meetings around a single question of the week or fortnight is also a great way to involve all. This could be ten minutes where everyone discusses an important school question. That’s how we approach it at Smart School Councils – supporting schools to have structured, regular, pupil-led class meetings using our Class Meeting Tool. Check out Hillview Primary’s case study (below) to see how they do this. Also, representation can be one of the ways that pupils get involved, but it shouldn’t be the only way. Otherwise you’re putting up a big barrier to the pupils who would never want to get elected. But what should this group be encouraging? Well, great ideas for social action and active citizenship shouldn’t be done by a small group of school councillors. It should be open to others. The best person to run a project, club or activity, is the person who’s had the idea themselves. After all, they are the person who cares about the idea and is most likely to put the effort in. Why should they pass their idea to a class rep, who passes it on to a year rep, and then to a school councillor? This is a great way to encourage pupil-led projects, clubs and activities to spring up. We call these groups Action Teams, and it’s amazing how quieter, less confident pupils or poorly behaved pupils who would never have stood for school council are happy to set one up. They often just need a supervised space at lunchtime, and can be matched with a staff sponsor who shares that interest, identified through our whole-school audit. Having a few projects happening at once, led by different groups, with a genuine opportunity

We now have weekly class meetings where each class talks about what is happening around the school and discusses a key question. Using the Class Meeting Tool, these are easily run by the children and gives them the opportunity to have a say in how the school is moving forward. Previous key questions have included listing the qualities they want in a new head teacher and deciding on how money raised by our school PTA is spent. The information from class meetings is then discussed during a weekly Communication Team meeting with two representatives attending from each class. This system enables all children to be fully aware of what is happening around the school. The discussions during the class meetings enable the children to learn about democracy and that having different opinions is okay. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

The pupils at Hillview are always keen to implement change and improve our school community. All children have the opportunity to do this by setting up Action Teams based on their own interests and passions. Each Action Team has a staff sponsor who provides support but allows the children to take ownership of the project and move it forward themselves. The children learn about team work and develop their organisational skills. Action teams have included fundraising for a fence for the school dogs and setting up a group to tidy up the garden area.

We now have 210 pupils regularly involved in our school council through the class meetings. The action teams have involved many children across the year groups and have all been created by the children themselves in response to a need that they have identified. Our Smart School Council promotes a positive ethos of change and action throughout the school and gives all children a voice.

“I like that everyone has a say” (Toby) “I like that we bring new ideas to the school and it makes the school better” (Katherine) “I like that everyone can contribute” (Sophie) “We get to do lots of things” (Katherine) Teaching Citizenship | 37


James Sloam is Reader in Politics at Royal Holloway University. His research focuses on youth civic and political engagement in Europe and the United States. Rakib Ehsan is a Doctoral Researcher at Royal Holloway, University of London. He specialises in British ethnic minority socio-political attitudes and young people’s politics. Matt Henn is Chair of Social Research at Nottingham Trent University. He has published widely in the areas of youth and political engagement.


James Sloam, Rakib Ehsan and Matt Henn In the aftermath of the 2017 General Election there was a lively debate in the media about whether or not we had witnessed a ‘youthquake’. The answer is important for citizenship teachers, not only because it helps us characterise the election when we teach about it, but also because it raises some interesting issues about the generation of young citizens we are teaching. In this article, three of the contributors to the on-going debate share their views about why we should take the idea of ‘youthquake’ seriously, and discuss some of the intergenerational differences are emerging.

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Even if we presume that turnout amongst 18-24 year olds did not increase (which is disputed) several other changes have reshaped the political landscape: including, the unprecedented rate of youth support for the Labour Party, high levels of youth activism in the campaign, and the distinctive cosmopolitan values of young Labour supporters.


A youthquake or just a tremor? The 2017 General Election result was described as a ‘youthquake’ – a shock result founded on an unexpected surge in youth turnout and the overwhelming support of younger voters for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party. Ipsos MORI data, ‘How Britain Voted in 2017’ (released after the election) revealed some dramatic changes amongst younger voters. Ipsos MORI and the Essex Continuous Monitoring Survey (Whiteley and Clarke 2017) both estimated an increase in youth turnout of around 20 percentage points As we (Sloam and Ehsan 2017a) show in our report for the Intergenerational Foundation, a remarkable 62% of 18-24 year olds voted for the Labour Party, contrasting with 27% for the Conservative Party. The gap in support for the two main parties amongst this cohort – 35 percentage points – was unprecedented in size. The excitement generated by the election was such that the Oxford English Dictionary named ‘youthquake’ the 2017 ‘word of the year’. This decision created much controversy amongst political commentators who decried the hype around the choice of word (after all, the Labour Party had not won the election!). More

interestingly, academics have – on the basis of new British Election Study data – described the youthquake as a ‘myth’ or a mere ‘tremor’ (Prosser et al. 2018).1 In this article we challenge this argument and emphasize the importance of youth engagement in the 2017 General Election for several reasons. First of all, to dismiss the so-called youthquake as a myth is to take a very narrow view about what constitutes political engagement and political change. Even if we presume that turnout amongst 18-24 year olds did not increase (which is disputed by other polling data),2 we would point to several other changes that have reshaped the political landscape: including, the unprecedented rate of youth support for the Labour Party, high levels of youth activism in the campaign (Pickard 2017), and the distinctive cosmopolitan values of young Labour supporters. As Sloam and Henn show in their forthcoming book on youth political participation (Palgrave 2018), these changes mark both a long-term generational effect as well as a more shortterm period effect on the values and political habits of Young Millennials growing up in the aftermath of the financial crisis and through | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

their experiences of the 2016 EU referendum. When one looks into the intragenerational dimensions of the youth vote, the changes in 2017 were remarkable. As we show below, the cosmopolitan-left attitudes and orientations of young people are particularly marked amongst young students and young women.3 These attitudes and orientations reflect broader societal changes that, as Norris and Inglehart (2016) have written, increase the relevance of cultural cleavages within contemporary democratic politics. We argue that a youthquake equates to much more than voter turnout, and should be seen as a multi-faceted phenomenon involving fundamental social, political and cultural shifts. It is worth noting that the OED itself defines a youthquake as ‘a significant cultural, political, or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people’. Finally, the narrative effects of the youthquake should not be dismissed out of hand. We would argue that the widespread acceptance that a youthquake has happened has had a tangible impact. Corbyn’s deliberate targeting of the youth vote, Labour’s unusually high dependency upon youth activists, and the unexpectedly strong performance of Labour in the election, have already encouraged the Conservative Government to rethink its approach to younger voters, leading to a review of – amongst other things – policy on tuition fees. In this article, we move beyond the debate about youth turnout in the 2017 General Election to examine youth participation from a broader perspective. We investigate the dramatic changes in youth voter choice in 2017 and over time, the policy preferences of younger citizens (highlighting the differences with older voters), and the important role of online activism. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

One of the most prominent features of the 2017 General Election was the importance of age in predicting which party an individual voted for. A remarkable 62% of 18-24 year olds voted for the Labour Party, contrasting with 27% for the Conservative Party – an unprecedented youth gap of 35 percentage points.


”Youthquake”: how and why young people reshaped the political landscape in 2017

Turning Left One of the most prominent features of the 2017 General Election was the importance of age in predicting which party an individual voted for. The Ipsos MORI data reveals some dramatic changes (Figure 1). A remarkable 62% of 18-24 year olds voted for the Labour Party, contrasting with 27% for the Conservative Party – an unprecedented youth gap of 35 percentage points. It is common to assume that the Labour Party is always more popular amongst younger voters, but this is not the case. In 2015, 18-24 year olds only supported Labour over Conservative by a margin of 42% to 28%. In 2010, the two large parties were locked together (in this age group) with the Liberal Democrats on approximately 30%.

Another feature of the 2017 General Election was the Labour Party’s capture of third party support – particularly from the Liberal Democrats and the Greens. The Liberal Democrats failed to improve on their disastrous performance amongst younger voters in 2015 (collapsing from 30% in 2010 to 4% in 2015). Although the Liberal Democrats managed not to lose further support amongst 18-24 year olds in 2017, tactical voting Teaching Citizenship | 39

Feature ”Youthquake”: how and why young people reshaped the political landscape in 2017

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Young Millennials – the new Cosmopolitan-Left Figure 3 shows the policy preferences of young people (18-24 year olds) compared to the average UK citizen, and the over 65s. For the youngest cohort of voters, healthcare was considered to be the most important issue (27%). This would naturally place Labour at an advantage over the Conservatives, with the former traditionally holding ownership of issues surrounding the NHS. The Labour Manifesto promised extra funding for the health service. The second most important issue for young people was Brexit (15% of younger citizens prioritized this policy area), and this was another issue where younger voters were more closely aligned to the official Labour position than the official Conservative position. The next priorities for 18-24 year olds included austerity, poverty and economic inequalities (13%) and education (10%). In our Populus poll of 1,351 18-30 year olds, we also found that, ‘housing’ emerged as a key theme for young people (although this was not classified as a separate category in the Ashcroft polling data). Whilst many of these issues may be long-term problems that have persisted for several decades, the polls suggest that young people associated austerity, economic inequalities and the increasingly unaffordable costs of housing with seven years of Conservative-led government. Conversely, the Labour Manifesto included concrete pledges on greater investment in social housing, and the abolition of university tuition fees. The perception of the ‘most important political issue’ clearly varies across generations. The differences between young and old were largest in the areas of ‘Brexit’ (minus 23 percentage points), the NHS (plus 14 points), education (plus 9 points), austerity, cuts and inequalities (plus 7 points), and immigration and asylum (minus 5 points). The cosmopolitan-left attitudes and sentiments of Young Millennials diverged remarkably from those of the over 65s. This relates not just to their policy priorities, but also to the positions adopted on the issues. This is particularly the case with regard to the political-cultural issues of Brexit and immigration. Our previous study of young people in the run-up to the 2016 EU referendum found | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

these two issues were underpinned by diametrically opposed attitudes towards cultural diversity amongst young and older citizens. New Political Communication: Online Mobilisation There is growing evidence to suggest that social media are increasingly trusted and consumed by young people when it comes to accessing political information. We investigated the official accounts of the Labour Party, Conservative Party, Jeremy Corbyn and Prime Minister Theresa May across three platforms: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The Labour Party was more effective at communicating its messages amongst younger voters (Fletcher 2017). Boosted by his celebrity endorsements and the emergence of left-leaning, online news platforms (such as The Canary), Jeremy Corbyn achieved about three times as many Facebook likes (1.4 million) and Twitter followers (1.42 million) as Theresa May. And unlike May, Corbyn was more popular than his own party in these social media (by 400,000 Facebook likes and almost a million Twitter followers). The Labour social media communications strategy – pioneered during Corbyn’s party leadership bid by the grassroots campaigning group, Momentum – provided an effective means of reaching out to younger voters through attractive, interactive content.


Younger voters were attracted by Corbyn’s opposition to austerity, his internationalist outlook and to his acceptance of immigration and cultural diversity.

Discussion We believe that efforts to downplay the importance of youth participation in the 2017 General | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Youth Support for Parties by Class, Gender and Ethnicity The Labour Party’s emphatic lead amongst 1824 year olds varied across different groups of young people (Figure 2). Labour gained greatest support from young BMEs (77%), young women (73%), and young people of a low social grade (70%). Whilst we might expect, from previous elections, that social grade and student status have a large impact on party support, the scale of the Labour Party’s appeal amongst young women and young BMEs was surprising. These results might be attributed to the Brexit effect and to the Corbyn effect (both of these groups were very likely to vote Remain, and to sympathise with the Labour leader’s views on economic inequality and international relations). Interestingly, the large differences in party allegiance by gender and class were not present within the population as a whole (adults of all ages). The influence of socio-economic status on voting intention has become more complex. In 2017, young people of a high social grade were more likely to support Labour than the Conservatives (by 52% to 31%), but to a smaller degree than the average 18-24 year old. However, full-time students were considerably more likely to vote Labour (by 62% to 22%).


Whilst many of these issues may be long-term problems that have persisted for several decades, the polls suggest that young people associated austerity, economic inequalities and the increasingly unaffordable costs of housing with seven years of Conservative-led government.


and a further weakening of student support lead to damaging defeats for Liberal Democrat incumbents in the university constituencies of Sheffield Hallam (Nick Clegg) and Leeds North West (Greg Mulholland). Labour also gained significantly from the Green Party, whose share of the youth vote fell form 8% in 2015 to just 2% in 2017.

Election are too heavily focussed on youth turnout. And, even on the subject of turnout, it is still possible that there were significant increases in youth turnout as a whole, in certain geographic locations, and amongst various sub-groups of young people (e.g. students). It is also important to think carefully about what constitutes a young person. Other writers in the field of youth studies have shown that young people’s transitions from youth to adulthood have become delayed and staggered in modern societies. Although we have focussed in this article on 18-24 year olds, it may actually be more helpful to think of younger rather than young citizens. It is generally accepted that in 2017, age replaced class as the key predictor of party choice. We propose two possible explanations for the large differences in voting for parties across age cohorts. First, the redistribution of resources away from younger citizens and youthoriented public policy over the past ten years has attracted more young people to the ideas of state intervention and increased public spending. Second, cultural differences across generations have deepened. Young people are more approving of cultural diversity, welcoming of European integration, and less concerned about immigration than older cohorts. Thus, younger voters were attracted by Corbyn’s opposition to austerity, his internationalist outlook and to his acceptance of immigration and cultural diversity (in contrast to the nationalist-authoritarian populism of Nigel Farage and Donald Trump). In the 2017 General Election and the 2016 EU referendum, support for the Labour Party and Remain was particularly strong amongst citizens who were young, highly educated, female and supportive of cultural diversity in Britain. Younger voters were politically energised by Brexit and Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party. In an echo of the 1960s, they expressed themselves as left-of-centre cosmopolitans, reacting both to austerity politics and the cultural conservatism found in older generations and embodied by the Leave campaign in the EU referendum. If voting and voter choice is habit-forming, the mobilization of younger voters by the Labour Party in 2017 means that all political parties, particularly the Conservative Party, Teaching Citizenship | 41



”Youthquake”: how and why young people reshaped the political landscape in 2017

Dr Arlene Holmes-Henderson is AHRC Research Fellow in Classics Education at King’s College London. She conducts research in Classics education, advises curriculum and assessment organisations, and trains teachers internationally.

A winning formula: Classical rhetoric for oracy education

Acknowledgement A version of this article first appeared in ‘Political Insight’ magazine, Volume 9 (issue 1), March 2018, pp. 4-8.

Pickard, S (2018) ‘Momentum and the Movementist ‘Corbynistas’: Young People Regenerating the Labour Party in Britain’. In Pickard, S and Bessant, J (Eds.) Young People ReGenerating Politics in Times of Crises, pp. 115-137). Palgrave. Prosser, C, Fieldhouse, E, Green, J, Mellon, J and Evan, G (2018) The Myth of the 2017 Youthquake Election, Sloam, J and Ehsan, R (2017a) Youth Quake: Young People and the 2017 General Election. London: Intergenerational Foundation. https://bit. ly/2EdUKAV Sloam, J and Ehsan, R (2017b) ‘Against the Tide: Young People and the 2016 Brexit Referendum’, Paper presented to the 2017 APSA Annual Meeting, 2 September, San Francisco. Whiteley, P and Clarke, H (2017) ‘Understanding Labour’s Youthquake’. The Conversation, 3 July 2017, 1


References Fletcher, R (2017) ‘Labour’s Social Media Campaign: more posts, more video, and more interaction’, UK Election Analysis, in Thorson, E, Jackson, D and Lilleker, D (Eds.) UK Election Analysis 2017, pp. 92-93. Norris, P and Inglehart, R (2016) ‘Trump, Brexit, and the rise of populism: Economic have-nots and cultural backlash’, HKS Working Paper No. RWP16026

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he authors of the BES report claim that there T was no surge in electoral turnout amongst 1824 year olds and that the youth vote (due to its numerical size if nothing else) did not swing the election. We would note that the BES sample size of 18-24 year olds was small (151) and did not (or could not) address the voting patterns of distinct sub-groups of young people (e.g. young women, young people in full-time education). See Peter Kellner, 31 January 2018, ‘The British Election Study claims there was no “youthquake” last June. It’s wrong’, Prospect, Clearly not all young people could be considered as participants or fellow travellers in this cosmopolitanleft movement, and it is much less reflective of young white men from poorer backgrounds. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Dr Arlene Holmes-Henderson In this article Arlene Holmes-Henderson argues that ancient traditions of rhetoric remain a relevant source for teachers to draw on precisely because those techniques are still evident in contemporary politics and marketing. In the current climate where schools are encouraged to equip students with the skills to spot fake news, teaching them the concepts to describe how language is being manipulated seems like a fun and practical part of the mix. Anyone for a quick game of spot the synecdoche? Classical rhetoric has, since ancient times, been an important feature of the Humanities curriculum. In this article, I summarise the role rhetoric played in Greek and Roman society and I suggest ways in which familiarity with rhetoric can both enrich oracy education across the contemporary school curriculum and bring benefits for citizens beyond school. How did rhetoric come about? In the early Greek world, military prowess was the indicator of success. There was no need for persuasive communication because power ensured compliance. It was only in 476BC when the Greek tyranny was overthrown, that law-courts were suddenly flooded with people trying to recover property through self-representation. For the first time, there was the need for individual citizens to speak up in public. A certain Corax (about whom we know very little) was the first to devise a method for effective argumentation and it went like this: Description of the point at issue Explanation of its context and importance Statement of arguments Refutation of opposing arguments Summary | Summer 2018 | Issue 47



need to try harder to develop a package of policies that can appeal to young people if they want to avoid the further ageing of their support base. The Labour Party also managed to engage many youth activists through its policy platform and the direct efforts of the party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, to interact with younger citizens. Labour certainly enjoyed a comfortable advantage over the Conservative Party in the social media space where political information is relatively trusted and highly-consumed by Britain’s young people. This led to Conservatives, such as Robert Halfon, a former Minister for Education, to argue for a Tory-affiliated version of Momentum, to counter Labour’s domination in the digital space. We argue that the 2017 General Election marked some profound changes in youth political participation. To suggest the youthquake was a myth takes a reductionist approach to youth political participation. It also fuels a much more dangerous myth – as could be observed in the media reaction to the BES article – the perception in many quarters that young people are apathetic and not interested in politics. This counternarrative has the potential to undermine young people’s sense of political efficacy and undermine political support for youth-oriented public policy.

Rhetoric is the art of enchanting the soul.


This is the first known example of a rhetorical method. People started to follow his example and were amazed by their ability to secure their desired end. As Greek democracy developed, it became increasingly important for citizens to be able to represent themselves articulately in order to contribute to public discussions about justice, welfare, war, the economy, politics and numerous other civic issues. As the importance of talk grew, specialist ‘rhetoric schools’ emerged in the Greek world and, later, rhetoric continued to play an important role in Roman education. Famous names like Plato, Aristotle, Demosthenes, Cicero and Quintilian all discussed the importance of rhetorical training for young men aged 16-20 as part of their preparation for life as an adult in society. The trouble is that they did not agree on what rhetoric actually is. What is Classical rhetoric? Ancient authors’ definitions of rhetoric vary, as can be seen below: Plato: Rhetoric is the “art of enchanting the soul.” Aristotle: “It is a counterpart of both logic and politics - and is the faculty of utilising, in any given case, the available means of persuasion.” Cicero: Rhetoric is “speech designed to persuade.” Quintilian: “Rhetoric is the art of speaking well” or “...the good man speaking well.” For today’s teachers of Citizenship, Politics, Teaching Citizenship | 43

Feature A winning formula: Classical rhetoric for oracy education

44 | Teaching Citizenship

Alliteration: Repetition of the same sound beginning several words in sequence. ‘Let us go forth to lead the land we love’. J. F. Kennedy


The rhetorical method provides a tried-and-tested approach to the construction and deconstruction of argument which is no less relevant and useful today than it was 2000 years ago.


So how can rhetoric enhance learning across the curriculum? The Citizenship curriculum in England requires that students can ‘research and interrogate evidence, debate and evaluate viewpoints, make persuasive and reasoned arguments, justify and substantiate their conclusions and take informed action’. Applying the rhetorical method involves not just following the formula, it requires critical thinking to select the most valuable pieces of information to support your argument. The structured approach provides a framework through which students can ‘think deeply and critically about a wide range of political, social, economic and ethical issues’. Once the most compelling pieces of evidence are selected, the critical thinking continues to the arrangement stage – how can I arrange these pieces of information for maximum impact? Rhetoric also cultivates critical literacy skills – the ability to read between the lines of others’ communication. The Greeks and Romans developed a handbook of more than a hundred rhetorical techniques which added colour and style to their speeches. I can certainly attest, from professional practice of teaching these rhetorical techniques in both Latin and English, that students have ‘lightbulb moments’ when they realise that politicians, advertisers and broadcasters still use these techniques today. Miss, does that mean that the latest Sony advert is actually a chiasmus? Yes. Oh, and the advert for Transport for London is synecdoche? Yes, yes it is. Why do so many brands use ancient rhetorical techniques today? Because they have persuaded people for 2500 years – they work. We ought to be teaching them to our young people to equip them to see through rhetorical flourish to discern truth. This, for me, is the essence of critical literacy and it is transferable to every subject on the curriculum.

A selection of classical rhetorical devices

Anaphora: The repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of successive phrases, clauses or lines. ‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair’. Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities Anticlimax: A rhetorical term for an abrupt shift from a serious or noble tone to a less exalted one – often for comic effect. ‘In moments of crisis I size up the situation in a flash, set my teeth, contract my muscles, take a firm grip on myself and, without a tremor, always do the wrong thing’. George Bernard Shaw Antithesis: The placing of a sentence or one of its parts against another to which it is opposed to form a balanced contrast of ideas, as in ‘Man proposes, God disposes’. Apostrophe: When a writer (or speaker) uses words to speak directly to a person or an opponent, or to an imaginary person, location, deity, abstract quality or idea, not actually present. ‘O black night, nurse of the golden eyes!’ Euripides Asyndeton: Deliberate omission of conjunctions between a series of words, phrases, or clauses. The effects of this device are to emphasize each clause and to produce a punctuated rhythm in the sentence. ‘I came, I saw, I conquered’. Julius Caesar (Adapted and excerpted from Corbett and Connors, 1998) | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Rhetoric is about speech. According to the ancients, the giving of speeches was about so much more than the words. There were rules governing body language and hand gestures. At rhetoric school, boys learned about the modes of persuasion – ethos, pathos and logos, where the comportment and reputation of the speaker, together with his (and, in the ancient world it was almost always ‘his’) ability to gauge and respond to the feelings of his audience were considered just as vital as the content of his speech. Ethos and pathos have important implications for oracy across the citizenship curriculum today – Burgoon’s 1985 study reckoned that 65% of communication was non-verbal. Our learners need to know this, and be taught how to optimise all aspects of talking and listening – the Greeks and Romans thought about this a great deal and offer us a treasure-trove of ideas, together with a step-by-step manual. How can rhetoric support oracy skills beyond the curriculum? Rhetoric can help cultivate critical listening – equipping learners to deconstruct the speech of others and ‘read between the lines’. This is so important outside school where young and old alike are bombarded with communication of all types and need some way of judging what they hear. I am suggesting that rhetoric offers a structure which, if applied, presents a path through the competing narratives. But it is in the construction of communication that I think rhetoric can most usefully boost oracy skills. For the ancients, proficiency in rhetoric was inextricably linked to active and participatory conceptions of citizenship. To become ‘responsible citizens’ (a capacity which is prominent in Scotland’s ‘Curriculum for Excellence’ [HolmesHenderson 2016]) young people need to be able to express themselves and their opinions in an accessible and persuasive way. Is rhetoric the only way? No. But if we are to move beyond weak notions of citizenship like volunteering, being environmentally friendly, picking up litter – to stronger notions including questioning the status quo, disrupting ineffective civic structures and imagining alternatives which promote social justice – learners need to become Quintilian’s ‘good people speaking well’, particularly if we expect political literacy and, by extension, democratic deliberation to flourish in our society. This fulfils another of the GCSE Citizenship curriculum aims

‘to experience and evaluate different ways that citizens can act together to solve problems and contribute to society’. We can learn a great deal by looking at the history of communication. Rhetoric is one method through which we can teach oracy and the associated benefits include critical thinking, critical literacy and responsible citizenship. Want to know more? The Advocating Classics Education project, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, seeks to widen access to Classics education in nonfee-paying British schools. Free training, resources and events are available to teachers who would like to find out more about introducing elements of Classics (in translation) to their teaching. See


Rhetoric cultivates critical literacy skills – the ability to read between the lines of others’ communication… students have ‘lightbulb moments’ when they realise that politicians, advertisers and broadcasters still use these techniques today. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Philosophy, Classics and English, there are interesting discussions to be had about the intersection of rhetoric and truth; using language to get what you want but with questionable moral motivations. These discussions are important and are likely to generate a number of opposing viewpoints. What matters, though, is that the rhetorical method provides a tried-and-tested approach to the construction and deconstruction of argument which is no less relevant and useful today than it was 2000 years ago.

Further reading suggestions Burgoon, J. (1985) ‘Nonverbal signals’, in M. Knapp and G. Miller (eds.), Handbook of Interpersonal Communication. Sage Publications, 344-390. Corbett, E. and Connors, R. (1998) Classical Rhetoric for the Modern Student. Oxford University Press. Forsyth, M. (2014) The elements of eloquence: how to turn the perfect English phrase. Icon Books. Holmes-Henderson (2016) ‘Responsible citizenship and critical skills in Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence: the contribution of Classical rhetoric to democratic deliberation’ in P. Carr, P.L. Thomas, B. Porfilio and J. Gorlewski, ‘Democracy and decency: what does education have to do with it?’ Information Age Publishers. Leith, S. (2012) You talkin’ to me? Rhetoric from Aristotle to Obama. Profile Books. Teaching Citizenship | 45


Dr Neil Phillipson provides training in Philosophy for Children (in association with SAPERE) and Dialogic Education. He co-authored a 2017 book on Dialogic Education with Professor Rupert Wegerif of Cambridge University. He is a tutor with Keele and North Staffordshire Teacher Education. Neil can be contacted by email or on Twitter @Phillipson70.

Education and the Dialogue of Humanity Neil Phillipson

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It’s important to acknowledge that the ‘best that has been thought and said’ is not the final word, but rather a collection of enduring contributions to an ongoing dialogue. Michael Oakeshott (1959) expresses this idea in his description of the ‘conversation of mankind’ (perhaps better described for modern times as the ‘dialogue of humanity’).


The dialogue of humanity I spend a lot of time arguing that teaching young people how to engage in dialogue is profoundly important. I go as far as to argue that one of the purposes of education is to draw young people into dialogue. This can draw fire from those persuaded that education is all about giving young people knowledge, but I think this is due to a misunderstanding of the argument; I think dialogue is essential to the meaningful development of knowledge. I also think it’s essential to becoming a better citizen and a better human being. Let’s start to substantiate these claims by considering the idea that education is a process of drawing into dialogue. Many people follow Matthew Arnold (1875) in arguing that our young people have a right to come to know ‘the best that has been thought and said’. I agree. But I think it’s important to acknowledge that the ‘best that has been thought and said’ is not the final word, but rather a collection of enduring contributions to an ongoing dialogue. Michael Oakeshott (1959) expresses this idea in his description of the ‘conversation of mankind’ (perhaps better described for modern times as the ‘dialogue of humanity’):

‘…we are the inheritors, neither of an enquiry about ourselves and the world, nor of an accumulating body of information, but of a conversation, begun in the primeval forests and extended and made more articulate in the course of centuries. It is a conversation which goes on both in public and within each of ourselves.’ Oakeshott also tells us that ‘In conversation, ‘facts’ appear only to be resolved once more into the possibilities from which they were made; ‘certainties’ are shown to be combustible...’, again emphasising the idea that knowledge is not fixed and final. In our recent book about Dialogic Education, Professor Rupert Wegerif writes that the education of young people is about ‘…enabling them to participate in the long-term cultural dialogues that make up the dialogue of humanity. On the one hand children’s lives are enriched by this participation and on the other hand the dialogue of humanity is enriched, refreshed and taken forwards by each generation of new recruits’ (Phillipson & Wegerif, 2017). In this view knowledge is provisional and perspectival; it is not ‘dead’, but living, growing, evolving. It follows that while ‘the best that has been thought and said’ is valuable, it should be | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

taught in a way that keeps it open to revision and reveals its relevance to the modern world and to our lives. This is important because it keeps our minds open to other possibilities and allows us to aspire to make a useful contribution to the dialogue of humanity in our own lifetimes. But what of the claim that dialogue is essential to the meaningful acquisition of knowledge? The long term cultural dialogues that Wegerif refers to above might include disciplines such as science, mathematics and theology. Concepts such as force, proof and love are much less precisely specified in everyday life than they are in these disciplines; coming to see such ideas from the perspective of an academic discipline or school subject requires a ‘creative leap‘ and this kind of perspective taking is precisely what is learned when learning to dialogue. We make sense of all new ideas or concepts by relating them to our existing understandings of the world (our schemas) which are formed from our previous experiences. Since people have different experiences it seems inevitable that they will come to understand new ideas in different ways; this makes it very difficult to simply ‘transmit’ ideas from one person to another, from A to B. Instead A and B need to seek to understand each other’s perspective, to allow the different perspectives to challenge each other and ultimately create new perspectives or schemas; in short A and B (whether they be student and teacher or peers) need to engage in dialogue. This is not to say that there is no place in education for the ‘transmission’ of information. We might acknowledge that number facts, the conjugation of verbs in different languages and key historical dates, for example, are best learned by rote. And an introduction to Newton’s laws


Knowledge is provisional and perspectival; it is not ‘dead’, but living, growing, evolving. It follows that while ‘the best that has been thought and said’ is valuable, it should be taught in a way that keeps it open to revision and reveals its relevance to the modern world and to our lives. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


In this article Neil Phillipson draws on his experience of working with Philosophy for Children specifically, and his broader thinking about the nature of dialogue, to develop a powerful argument about the role of dialogue in education. Rather than seeing debate and discussion as skills to add on to the curriculum, he argues that dialogue underpins the idea of a curriculum, and even frames our ideas about knowledge. This puts dialogue at the very heart of what schools do and what they are for.

may well require careful exposition – students really can’t discover everything for themselves. But ultimately if we want students to make meaning of propositional knowledge and to come to understand it from the perspective of the teacher or of the subject, then we need to give them the opportunity to engage in dialogue. Dialogic Pedagogy If we accept the view of knowledge and its acquisition set out above there are clearly implications for our thinking about pedagogy. A dialogic pedagogy will, of course, involve creating opportunities for teaching through dialogue. However, good dialogue is not as easy to achieve as we might like, and so dialogic pedagogies must also be concerned with teaching young people how to engage in dialogue (teaching for dialogue). There are a number of well-established pedagogical approaches that support teaching both through and for dialogue: Dialogic Teaching (Robin Alexander), Thinking Together (Neil Mercer, Lyn Dawes and Rupert Wegerif ) and Accountable Talk (Lauren Resnick) are notable examples. The approach I use most often is the development of ‘Communities of Enquiry (CoE)’. The idea of the CoE was employed by Matthew Lipman in his development of Philosophy for Children, something I have been involved in for a number of years (for more information visit: Members of a CoE engage in a collaborative effort to reach better shared understandings of different perspectives and different ideas and concepts. These concepts can be those central to living a good or considered life (fairness, forgiveness or beauty, for example) or those that are central to disciplinary knowledge Teaching Citizenship | 47

Feature Education and the Dialogue of Humanity

Such ground rules are certainly not comprehensive and will need to be reviewed and developed over time, but they might provide a useful starting point in the journey towards ‘good dialogue’. It is perhaps the capacity of a CoE to reflect on such rules and their impact 48 | Teaching Citizenship

and sustain the effort to realise good dialogue that will ultimately determine the success of this dialogic approach. All of the approaches mentioned have been demonstrated to impact positively on student attainment. In the last two years studies carried out by the Education Endowment Foundation in England have suggested that Philosophy for Children (Gorard et al., 2015) and Dialogic Teaching (Jay et al., 2017) raise attainment in a number of subjects (larger follow-up studies are underway). I would argue that the use of one or more of these approaches is invaluable in the development of dialogic pedagogy. Teaching for dialogue is effortful and requires time. Fortunately the benefits go well beyond the meaningful acquisition of knowledge. Dialogic skills are essential to problem-solving. This is contested by some. Daniel Willingham (2007) reminds us of the importance of subject knowledge to problem-solving: ‘The processes of thinking are intertwined with the content of thought (that is, domain knowledge). Thus, if you remind a student to ‘look at an issue from multiple perspectives’ often enough, he will learn that he ought to do so, but if he doesn’t know much about an issue, he can’t think about it from multiple perspectives.’ I agree with Willingham. But I don’t think the premise ‘dialogic thinking skills are of little use without a depth of subject knowledge’ leads to the conclusion ‘a depth of subject knowledge is sufficient’. I think there is a synergistic relationship here: knowledge is important for problem-solving, but it is complemented by the ability to ‘think well’. And as Wegerif (2016) explains: ‘…to think usefully in any domain you need content knowledge but the fundamental process of the thinking is universal… in the very human sense of ways of orientations towards others or ways of relating | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

to others in a dialogue. Being able to switch point of view is essential to all forms of good thinking… in every domain. And being able to switch point of view is not something that everyone does equally well and is something that can be taught.’ And of course problem solving goes well beyond academic learning. Participating in society means solving problems and overcoming challenges together: reasoning and being reasonable. Preparing young people to participate in the kind of ‘deliberative’ democracy envisaged by philosophers such as Dewey, Habermas, and Rawls means teaching them how to engage in careful, collaborative, critical and creative dialogue. This seems to be recognised in the English National Curriculum: the programmes of study for Citizenship make clear the perceived importance of young people being able to share their opinions and seek to understand the perspectives and values of others, including those from other places and other times. And, perhaps most importantly of all, there is a moral obligation to teach dialogue. The philosopher Dmitri Nikulin (2010) tells us that ‘Dialogue is a therapy – perhaps the therapy – against the misrecognition of one person by another’. In a world in which so much suffering is caused by the failure of one person to recognise the humanity of another, I would argue that not teaching dialogue is an abdication of our moral responsibility as educators. A dialogic education will help young people to gain and make sense of knowledge, to appreciate its significance and relevance and to believe that they might have a role to play in its continued development. It will also enhance them as human beings, making them concerned and able to come to understand different perspectives and enabling them to engage in critical, caring, collaborative and creative dialogue with ‘the other’ in whatever form they encounter it.


Participating in society means solving problems and overcoming challenges together: reasoning and being reasonable. Preparing young people to participate in democracy means teaching them how to engage in careful, collaborative, critical and creative dialogue. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


(proof, energy or significance, for example). Participants reflect on their developing (ever provisional) understanding of ideas and on the developing quality of their dialogue. The ‘4Cs’ framework supports groups to begin to articulate what good dialogue involves and to work progressively towards it. This framework is based on Matthew Lipman’s contention that good thinking (and good thinking together, or dialogue) involves different (yet inter-related) modes of thought: caring, collaborative, critical and creative. These modes of thought can be defined to some extent through the development of related ‘ground rules’ as illustrated below.

Acknowledgements: The ideas expressed in this article have been shaped by dialogues with my colleagues Rupert Wegerif (Professor of Education at Cambridge University) and Diane Swift (Director of Keele and North Staffordshire Teacher Education). References Arnold, M. (1875). Culture and Anarchy. Available at Gorard, S., Siddiqui, N. and See, B. H. (2015). Philosophy for Children: Evaluation Report and Executive Summary, EEF. Available at https://bit. ly/2GJ7Uvd Jay, T., Willis, B., Thomas, P., Taylor, R., Moore, N., Burnett, C., Merchant, G., Stevens, A. (2017). Dialogic Teaching: Evaluation Report and Executive Summary, EEF. Available at https://bit. ly/2h45RGM Nikulin, D. (2010). Dialectic and Dialogue. Stanford: Stanford University Press. Oakeshott, M. (1959). The Voice of Poetry in the Conversation of Mankind. London: Bowes and Bowes. Phillipson, N. and Wegerif, R. (2017). Dialogic Education: Mastering Core Concepts through Thinking Together. London: Taylor and Francis. Wegerif, R. (2016). Comment made on a blog. Available at Willingham, D. T. (2007). Critical Thinking: Why Is It So Hard to Teach? American Federation of Teachers. Available at

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Julie Elizabeth Heathcote completed her PhD in 2017 and the full report is available on-line:

Pupils’ Perceptions of Citizenship Education and Good Citizenship: An empirical case study and critical analysis of one interpretation of citizenship education in an ‘outstanding school’. Julie Elizabeth Heathcote

Citizenship education has been a statutory part of the National Curriculum in English Secondary Schools since 2002. The majority of research papers that have examined citizenship education plus a key report from Ofsted (2010) have examined it from the perspectives of teachers, policy makers or academics. This empirical research sought to address this imbalance by accessing the views of This case study is the pupils themselves, views that are crucial to based on an insiderthe future shaping of future educational policy researcher approach pertaining to citizenship education, in the context that capitalises on of a case study in one particular school. This the existing teacher research, therefore, presented a critical analysis pupil relationship of one interpretation of citizenship education in and the opportunity an 11-19 ‘outstanding school’ (Ofsted, 2010). this offers to seek It aimed to explore young people’s views on out understandings citizenship education and ‘good citizenship’ and, from the pupils further, illustrate why their perceptions can, and themselves. should, influence future debate on education policy in this statutory subject. As mentioned previously, the majority of the published work has been dominated by the voice of established academics or policy leaders. This case study, by contrast, is based on an insider-researcher



50 | Teaching Citizenship

approach that capitalises on the existing teacher pupil relationship and the opportunity this offers to seek out understandings from the pupils themselves. The rationale for placing pupils at the heart of the case study was to offer an insight concerning the learning, teaching and experiences of young people and to facilitate ‘pupil voice.’ Although ‘pupil voice’ is not a new concept, much of it has been limited to various satisfaction surveys which have been used by central government as a part of their benchmarking school assessment strategies. In this study ‘pupil voice’ allowed pupils far more detailed reflection and offered them an opportunity to comment on a specific area of the curriculum. This thesis therefore, aimed to make a significant contribution to our knowledge within the discipline, which will contribute to future developments in the citizenship education curriculum. In brief, the research found that pupils were of the opinion that citizenship education was an important subject and that most lessons were either outstanding or good. They valued discussing social issues and current affairs that were interesting and relevant to them. Group work was the most | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

favoured classroom activity. The pupils were able to be critical. Where teaching was concerned, some felt that a number of teachers lacked confidence, subject knowledge and commitment. However, others found teachers created a positive learning environment, were knowledgeable about the subject and invited pupils to get involved. The study concluded that lessons work best when interactive, purposeful and well-planned with outcomes that inspire young people to make a difference to their communities. Pupils viewed ‘good citizenship’ as being caring, active in the community, knowledgeable about democracy, voting in elections, being tolerant of diversity and being morally and socially responsible and law abiding. Pupils considered participation in the community, charity work and volunteering at home and abroad as an essential aspect of ‘good citizenship’. This next section presents some ideas that may be utilised in a citizenship education programme based on a targeted approach using young people as a resource. More specifically it focuses on how schools can give pupils a voice and how it can engage pupils in an evolving citizenship education programme, based on current affairs and issues directly or indirectly facing young people.


Pupils were of the opinion that citizenship education was an important subject and they valued discussing social issues and current affairs that were interesting and relevant to them. Group work was the most favoured classroom activity.

An example of a targeted citizenship education programme where young people are utilised effectively as a resource As citizenship education is a statutory subject on the National Curriculum in England (2002), schools must integrate it into the ethos and daily routines of the school. There are a variety of teaching approaches to citizenship education and, according | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


Teaching Citizenship features PhD work in the area of citizenship education, whenever we can. We want to highlight how the evidence base is building over time, and to celebrate the range of good research that is being carried out by practitioners across the country. In this article we are very pleased that Julie Heathcote has agreed to share some highlights from her recently completed doctoral research, which captures some of the knowledge being built up among teachers. This makes a strong case for teachers to be involved in research, both to help them think clearly about their experience, and also to ensure that such practical knowledge is captured and published for others to access.

to the Department for Education (2014), it is for each school to determine what is most appropriate for them. This autonomy or discretion may be viewed as at odds with the top-down rigidity often found in other parts of the school curriculum. A participatory approach was most evident at the Water Park Academy. The whole school Uganda Project was an example of this. Whether participatory, observational or social learning approaches are used the overall objective is to foster useful social and economic skills and a range of positive values in the individual. The programme provided at the Water Park Academy was certainly an inclusive one in that a range of stakeholders participate such as the pupils themselves and, where possible, their parents and the wider community. In keeping with the general trends in educational practice, the programme is predicated on empowerment and the validity and importance of the ‘pupil voice’. Only through the encouragement of these concepts can young people really develop into the effective citizens of the future. This next section will offer a number of citizenship education activities which are based on a targeted and evolutionary model. The term targeted refers to the particular ‘key stage’ of the pupil and evolutionary means that the education is responsive to pupil needs and preferences. Developing a climate for collaborative learning It is proposed that schools must initially agree a philosophical approach that is articulated in the schools aims, policy statements and educational objectives. Although often broad in meaning, the organisation may opt to revisit their mission statement as this will contain the sort Teaching Citizenship | 51

Feature Pupils’ Perceptions of Citizenship Education and Good Citizenship: An empirical case study and critical analysis of one interpretation of citizenship education in an ‘outstanding school’.

Controversial issues In this case study some teachers told their pupils that they lacked the training and knowledge for teaching citizenship education particularly around the topic of political education and, as expected, this was not well received by the pupils. The political aspects of the knowledge seemed to be most frequently lacking and it may be argued that this had an effect on both 52 | Teaching Citizenship


Pupils viewed ‘good citizenship’ as being caring, active in the community, knowledgeable about democracy, voting in elections, being tolerant of diversity and being morally and socially responsible and law abiding.


In order to answer these questions the school community needs to begin a process to address some of the ethical and social problems faced by individuals in society. The school must also be mindful of the curriculum learning outcomes for each of the key stages. These should not be too onerous in terms of their achievement or assessment. This suggests that those who have been influential in the development of the citizenship education curriculum value the process far more than the assessment. This thesis highlighted the way in which one school acknowledged these dimensions and developed a targeted citizenship education programme. The success in developing various local as well as international projects has inspired and motivated many pupils, teachers and parents.

the process and the learning outcomes. For example, most pupils seemed to have taken the view that democracy and politics were only synonymous with voting. This was disappointing because democracy in the 21st century is multi-faceted and offers a plurality of opportunities to make demands or provide inputs where the political system is concerned. Although blame may be placed on the teachers themselves, it may be argued that government and politics may be far removed from their core subject specialism and some tutors may well have had citizenship education added to their time-table in an ad hoc way, perhaps at short notice with no training to overcome this deficit. Whilst this is clearly not best practice, such organisational behaviour is likely to persist due to staffing or funding issues. According to Parsons (2004) ‘no curriculum area is devoid of controversy and just as teaching about these issues can be seen as ‘political’ not teaching about them is equally political’ (p. 5). The citizenship curriculum seeks to avoid controversy through its emphasis on personal or social skills and the development of greater empathy with others and through voluntary participation. These proposed citizenship education activities therefore invite pupils to work their way with their teachers through complex issues which have direct relevance for them in their everyday lives. For example, drug and alcohol misuse, cyber bullying, self-harm, mental health and safeguarding are all useful topics to explore and ameliorate. Such issues were highlighted by the pupils themselves although one might argue that conflict, racism, xenophobia, religious intolerance and disability issues are perhaps just as important. Discussions based on pupils own experiences, opinions or research can be productive. For example these issues may be generated by whole school or year assemblies, significant calendar dates or important charity projects. In the case study school, the Uganda Project linked all pupils in the school to some meaningful aims and objectives. Certainly through drawing on pupil experiences the learning process becomes more relevant and is likely to be internalised more effectively. This next section takes this premise further by offering some ‘Keys to good citizenship’. Keys to good citizenship These activities are aimed at teachers and parents who want to support young people in their development of ‘good citizenship’. During the | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

research interviews, which were carried out in an 11 to 19 school in the East Midlands, pupils were asked how they would ‘describe a good citizen in the 21st-century’. This rationale helped to realise the notion of voice and empowerment. Key emerging themes from the findings of the research were categorised as follows: ‘A good citizen would’… 1: care about the community and participate in community activities 2: c are about people in both the loss and wider community 3: be knowledgeable about politics and democracy 4: b e socially and morally responsible and law abiding 5: have sound personal qualities For the purpose of these activities, the personal qualities that have been identified by the study pupils will act as a framework for determining keys to ‘young citizenship’. The main qualities identified by pupils were categorised as follows: • Helping others • Care (consideration and respect) • Leadership • Tolerance and understanding More specifically pupils highlighted the following personal qualities as central to ‘good citizenship’: • Effective listening • Good social skills • Approachable • Sensitive towards others • Understanding • Getting along with people • Helpful • Considerate Discussion work During the case study pupils noted how boys often sought to dominate classroom discussion. Teachers need to anticipate and pre-empt this behaviour though the establishment of ground rules before discussion commences. Listening to others, and empathising with the views of other pupils, also helps to build citizenship skills and the avoidance of the problem referred to. Although different views ought to be respected and listened to the challenge is when views are expressed that might be construed as hateful

or racist. This is not always as easy to address, especially when such views might have their origins in religious or cultural beliefs. Perhaps this is where the skills of a well read and highly skilled Citizenship teacher comes into play.


Some teachers told their pupils that they lacked the training and knowledge for teaching citizenship education particularly around the topic of political education and, as expected, this was not well received by the pupils. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47


of humanistic values so important to citizenship education. The school is likely to engage in critical reflection and then as a result of that process, it will identify its ethical priorities which relate to the citizenship education programme. However, as was discussed in the main body of the thesis, the citizenship education programme is something which is certainly informed by the key ideological themes in the curriculum itself such as liberalism, civic republicanism and communitarianism. Any successful climate of collaborative learning must reflect the schools core values but it must also be mindful of the objectives found in documents like the Crick Report (1998). The following provides a list of some of the key questions schools must ask: 1. What are the shared ethical principles of the school? 2. How does the school measure success in its efforts to action these principles? 3. How does the school promote citizenship education? 4. How are pupils actively involved? 5. How well are pupils integrated into all aspects of the school curriculum and ethos?

Aids for discussion Aids for discussion need to be agreed for the classroom in an open and transparent way. Sometimes it is helpful to write them down as a poster for display in the classroom. Such ‘ground rules’ need establishing, prior to any discussion, not later as a result of problems encountered. 1. E veryone has the right to speak and everyone has the right to be listened to. For example, good listening includes eye contact, positive body language and showing empathy through other social cues is helpful. 2. P upils need to be aware that confidentiality is an important aspect of classroom discussion. For example, if a pupil is disclosing some sensitive information it should stay in the classroom. Yet, other issues which might not necessarily be personal should also not be allowed to become the cause of gossip, or group based behaviours directed against the individual. However, the teacher must explain to the pupils at the outset that in case of a safeguarding issue there would not be ‘absolute confidentiality’ as the concern would need to be passed onto the ‘named safeguarding officer’ in school. 3. Pupils must respect what is being said. For example, if a pupil disagrees with a comment or viewpoint they must respect that person’s opinion even though they may not agree with it. For example, pupils need to learn not to personalise such disagreements. Pupils may then develop a sense of mutual respect. However, as noted any comments construed as hateful or racist must be dealt with immediately. Conclusion This section presented some ideas that may be utilised in a citizenship education programme based on a targeted approach using young people as a resource. More specifically it focused on how schools can give pupils a voice and how it can engage pupils in an evolving citizenship education programme, based on current affairs and issues directly or indirectly facing young people. Teaching Citizenship | 53


Spotlight on ACT Council

By Sophie Fewkes

Edited by Hans Svennevig, Vice Chair of Council

Review of AQA Citizenship Studies GCSE Revision Notes second edition By Mike Mitchell

ACT Council is a voluntary body comprised of ACT Staff and elected from ACT membership. Council members are from across the country, from a wide range of Citizenship settings and contexts. We have representation from primary and secondary education, FE, HE, initial teacher training and non profit organisations. ACT Council represents the membership of ACT, and is the link between membership and the staff at ACT; it shapes and supports the delivery of ACT educational work and strategy. The Council normally meets three times a year to discuss priorities for the year and to provide an opportunity for practitioners to support and influence the work of ACT. An important part of Council work is to take a lead on the planning of the ACT Annual Conference and regional networking opportunities, meeting the needs that ACT members have identified. Additionally, the Council plays a key role in influencing the content of the journal, and in often contributing articles for publication. Any member of ACT can stand for Council with a maximum of 25 Council Members. If you feel this is something you would like to be part of then please do email me (Helen) with a little bit of information about yourself and your experience of Citizenship education!

Published by Hodder 2018 ISBN 978-1-5104-1830-1

ACT asked a pupil at Perins School, Alresford in Hampshire to read Mike Mitchells new book for GCSE Citizenship Studies. Sophie Fewkes is taking her GCSE exam in 2019 and so an early look at the revision guide was most helpful to her. Sophie writes: I found this book very well written with useful information that I, as a student, will find very useful when revising next year. It is especially helpful to me as there are check lists and cool tips, such as when to test yourself on a fact, good websites to check out and hints at how to think through questions and issues. For example, get to know about your local Council because it is always good to be able to quote a real example in any question about local government and how not to confuse the free press with free newspapers! This all means that you don’t miss anything out. I think the most useful bit though is the revision planner on pages 4-7, it really helps you think about how to plan to revise and prepare for the exam. One thing I found a challenge was the length of some paragraphs. These make it more difficult to find some of the key points or in trying to sum up. Don’t get me wrong, they are well written but maybe some are a bit lengthy! I think if I could ask Mike Mitchell to make one change it would be to put in more data or graphs to analyse and definitely put even more sample questions at the end of each topic. Overall, I think this is a great revision guide for use by students and I would one hundred percent use this book next year. I will be buying one!

54 | Teaching Citizenship

In this new series - ACT Council members will share their journey to Council. We will read about their experiences in citizenship education and discover some of their hopes and dreams for the subject. In this first episode, Helen Blachford Chair of ACT Council introduces the Council; followed by the first spotlight on Council member Kevin Walker.

ACT would like to thank Sophie for her review. It’s great to get a student perspective on a key book for the GCSE. Teachers should note that Hodder has produced a chart to show how to use Mike Mitchell’s book to support the Edexcel and OCR Citizenship studies exams as well. ACT members have already been using this successfully in TeachMeets and our GCSE CPD events. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Council Member Kevin Walker I joined ACT council in 2015 after a conversation with some members at the previous conference. In retrospect I wish I had joined before, as an enthusiastic citizenship teacher (now retired) I felt that I could not find the time to participate. Now I think that participating in the development of the subject at a national level could have made me, if not less busy, then at least feeling more supported and in good company as I battled to introduce the GCSE and then A level into my school. I was (and still am until next year) a Principal Examiner for the Citizenship A level and as ACT were playing a central part in the campaign to retain the qualification the least I could do was to offer my reciprocal support. Both my teaching and exam board experience makes me feel that I have something to contribute but often the most useful voices in Council are those currently teaching who are able to maintain the classroom focus that makes ACT worthwhile. It is nice to be part of a positive group whose enthusiasm for the subject is infectious. Despite retiring from school, I still enjoy teaching but now as part of the Practical Political Education Pathway for the WEA (Workers Educational Association) which is basically citizenship for grown-ups without the exams. This also means I can now focus on my doctoral thesis entitled ‘What is the Educators’ Role in the development of Active Citizenship’? The short answer* to this question is by furthering democratic relationships with students and colleagues and by participating in activities and organisations aiming to bring about positive change. In short, practicing the craft of active citizenship. What better way to do this than by becoming part of the change and adding one’s voice to the council guiding the subject association. * the long answer runs to 50,000 words so I will spare you that here. | Summer 2018 | Issue 47

Teaching Citizenship | 55

The subject association for Citizenship – some highlights from 2017-18 Developing resources The Deliberative Classroom resources to teach about the fundamental British values as core Citizenship concepts.

Human Rights Education

Teaching about, through and for rights.

The Building Resilience project to demonstrate the importance of the Citizenship curriculum to school responses to Prevent policy.

The Deliberative Classroom: Religious Freedom TOPIC BRIEFIN G AND LESSON PLANS 2017

The Social Action Toolkit developed by ACT to help teachers make the links between the Citizenship curriculum and NCS participation.

Also in this edition:

Assessment after the levels, the new GCSE specifications and teaching the implications of Brexit. Issue No 46 Winter 2017

Journal of the Association for Citizenship Teaching

Providing training and support ACT National Conference, this year on 7th July. The most important national event in the calendar for Citizenship teachers. Teach Meets have been held regularly throughout the last year and will continue into next year. These are facilitated by expert teachers from ACT Council. GCSE training, organised by ACT and experienced examiners.

Speaking up for Citizenship Representing the UK at the Council of Europe. Submitting evidence and appearing as a witness at the House of Lords Citizenship and Civic Engagement Committee. Continued lobbying for Citizenship through responses to consultations, individual meetings with ministers and civil servants, and membership of the APPG on Democratic Participation.

Championing high standards

The ACT Quality Standard allows teachers and schools, colleges and FE institutions to gain public recognition for the work they are doing in Citizenship. The ACT Quality Mark for citizenship teaching resources signposts busy teachers to the best resources on the market, by applying a rigorous quality assurance process involving a panel of citizenship experts who review each resource. Coordinating the Five Nations Network to push forward practice.

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