Citizenship

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The key aim in having introduced Citizenship Education was to prepare young people for their lives outside the school environment. This was to be achieved by giving them the knowledge, skills and understanding to be an active member of society. Citizenship lessons targeted key aspects of society, which were in most cases controversial, these subjects included current laws, duties and freedom, individual rights and responsibilities to the public as well as justice and democracy. Citizenship education also was implemented to make students aware of the cultural differences which surround them and encourage tolerance and respect for diverse ethnic identities. The ideas which are taught in these lessons can be broken down into subtopics, which are all as important as each other. One of these subtopics is “Democracy and justice”: this is where students are sensitised to political and justice systems in the UK as well as government policies in different parts of the world. Pupils are taught freedom of individuals as part of democracy, law as part of justice and accountability. They also learn about the necessity to balance competing and conflicting requirements and understanding that in a democracy not everyone has what they wish. All these aspects are explained for the student to then be able to participate actively in a wide range of decision-making and voting in the future. Linking teaching about democracy, elections and voting with the student council provides a way for students to apply their learning to real decision-making situations. A different topic which is tackled is Rights and responsibilities: In this portion the citizenship education, the students are taught that there is not just one right way and that there are different “obligations and responsibilities – political, legal, human, social, civic and moral”. It is important to undertake this particular topic as it encases some of the most controversial aspects, for example of when freedom of...
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