Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Education for Democratic Citizenship in the Americas: An Agenda for Action

Inter-American Development Bank

Title: Education for Democratic Citizenship in the Americas: An Agenda for Action

Authors: Fernando Reimers, Christian Cox, Rosario Jaramillo

Website: http://www.iadb.org/sds/scs/index_scs_e.htm

Publish: August 2005, Sustainable Development Department State, Governance and Civil Society Division, Education Unit, Inter-American Development Bank

Full Document: Link

Education offers the potential to achieve a democracy firmly rooted in society’s cultural foundation, and holds out an opportunity that must not go to waste. The challenge is to establish, through education, a “virtuous cycle” between democratic institutions

and democratic political culture. Education’s potential to create capabilities among the new generation for active citizen engagement depends, fundamentally, on a reevaluation of civic education and the need for educators to ensure that their efforts to

produce informed citizens will be meaningful in practice. The gap that exists distance today between young people and the obligations and practices of a political democracy can be breached. To do so will require new and meaningful answers to questions about the knowledge, values, and skills that comprise citizen education. Cynicism and apathy toward

political processes must be eliminated, and democratic culture fostered as an ideal that endows a community with tools to act together.