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ERIC Number: ED561917
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jun
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Florida and Illinois: Civics Initiatives, No Law Required
Millard, Maria; Delander, Brady
Education Commission of the States
Since the 1970s, public engagement has declined, generating great concern for some about the future of our nation's democracy. Some consider this decline a national crisis. Two states, Illinois and Florida, have made significant efforts--without legislation--to create a network of academic institutions committed to providing students with opportunities to gain the skills necessary to be effective participants in a democracy. These efforts demonstrate how leadership can drive change. Illinois and Florida take notably different approaches. Illinois' initiative is targeted at high school students through the state's Democracy Schools, which are schools recognized by the Illinois Civic Mission Coalition for their established commitment to civic learning. The Florida College System Civics Literacy Initiative, meanwhile, is viewed as a long-term project that will impact college students throughout the state as well as communities served by the participating colleges. Both states are using systems-change to send a strong signal that civics education is a priority--in Florida, this refers to the college system, while in Illinois the focus is on the Schools of Democracy system. Illinois and Florida are examples of states affecting large-scale change without policy directives. With that, their work has caught the attention of the policy world. [This report is the one of a series of reports examining state initiatives related to civic education. For the other reports: "Florida and Tennessee: Accountability in Civic Education," see ED561922; "States Address Civics with Mandated Task Forces," see ED561924; "Advancing Civic Learning with Administrative Authority," see ED561911; "Secretaries of State Make Impact, Lasting Impression in Civics," see ED561941; and "Different Paths to a Common Goal: Preparing Students for Civic Life," see ED561954.]
Education Commission of the States. ECS Distribution Center, 700 Broadway Suite 1200, Denver, CO 80203-3460. Tel: 303-299-3692; Fax: 303-296-8332; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: State Farm
Authoring Institution: Education Commission of the States; National Center for Learning and Civic Engagement (NCLCE)
Identifiers - Location: Florida; Illinois