Citizenship education in multicultural society: Teachers' practicesPaola Dusi, University of Verona, Faculty of Scienze della Formazione, ItalyMarilyn Steinbach, University of Sherbrooke, Facultuy of Education, CanadaGiuseppina Messetti, University of Verona, Faculty of Scienze della Formazione, ItalyProblem Statement: International literature indicates a decrease in participation (Birzea et al., 2005) in societies where legal frameworks are challenged by sociopolitical and cultural changes like migration, neoliberalism and globalization (Benhabib, 2002). Schools, along with families, play a leading role in education for democratic citizenship (civic, social, human rights).Purpose of Study: In contemporary democratic societies schools must offer a new model of citizenship with multiple possible memberships. This research is to verify if and how teachers and institutions engage in education for democratic citizenship in an intercultural perspective.Research Methods: We conducted qualitative conversational interviews with 47 teachers (eight preschool, 16 primary, 15 middle school and eight secondary). Open-ended questions on their missions and what they do in class to promote citizenship education were employed to understand their beliefs about citizenship education and their practices to promote a democratic intercultural habitus among students. Findings: Some teachers have ambiguous or assimilationist conceptions of citizenship education, and others base it on ethics and interculturalism for an inclusive concept of citizenship, but feel isolated within their institutions and wider society. Teachers' descriptions of practical actions fall into seven major categories: belonging, listening to others, participation, recognizing differences, managing conflicts, making rules together and building communities. Conclusions: We note a neo-assimilationist, nationalistic understanding of citizenship education. There are good practices which are not yet instilled institutionally, so teachers trying to foster a democratic habitus feel isolated. Participation, belonging, and citizenship are rooted in identity formation (Bell, 1999), and instituted through family and school. Transferring universal declarations and ethics into daily practice cannot be done by teachers alone, but requires the examples and actions of adults in wider society, and teachers need specific training interventions to orient this work.
|Titolo:||Citizenship Education in Multicultural Society: Teachers' Practices|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2012|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.01 Articolo in Rivista|