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Civics Forward Event: Education And Engagement

In this episode of Civics Forward, we discussed the importance of civic education and the roles of business leaders to promote informed civic engagement in our community. This conversation was held with David Bobb, president of Bill of Rights Institute, and Elizabeth Clay Roy, CEO of Generation Citizen.

Civic education is rooted in engagement. We can teach students as much about government and history as we can, but it’s the application of it where people feel empowered and make an impact.

Civic education should engage students in the development of critical thinking and civil discourse skills to create positive community change. Generation Citizen takes this understanding of civic education and incorporates it into their instructional projects.

4 Key Factors Of A Generation Citizen Civics Project:

  1. Student led projects
  2. Real life community problems grounded in data
  3. Approaches to solving a problem should have a lasting change
  4. Reflection on the process, solution, and community impact

Although Generation Citizen and Bill of Rights Insititute focus on student civics education, learning should not stop there. For our society to be well informed in civics, we need to engage business leaders.

As Bobb emphasized, “Civics isn’t about that 10th period class. It’s really a mindset, and I think getting to that place of it being a mindset and something that suffuses all endeavors of America life is going to require real leadership among our business leaders.”

This includes encouraging robust debates in the conference room that promote our freedoms as Americans and encourages learning. It also includes rebuilding trust.

Roy stated, “I think that recognizing that standing up for values is not partisan and is not risky. That might mean conversations with employees and conversations with an executive team to think through that and talk through it, but shying away from the public forum has a risk as well. I encourage business leaders to stand up for their values and to demonstrate them.”

Watch the full episode here:

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