Newsletter Four

 
This edition of the Network Newsletter reports on the recent Ethos Network Roadshow in Saltcoats, which invited delegates to consider what it means to be a good citizen. It also includes two international reports, reflecting on inclusion and participation: one from the Czech Republic and one from Canada. Another article describes the aims of the new International Consortium on School Disaffection, while a report from England looks at an innovative scheme, where pupils are involved in staff interviews. This newsletter is edited by Meg Cowie and produced by Anne Clifford.
 

Who wants to be a good citizen?

If we believe that to be a good citizen we simply have to know and understand how our country is governed we are surely missing the point. It is about much more than that.Terry Ashton addresses delegates at the roadshow in Saltcoats

Terry Ashton, Advisor in Guidance and Careers in Aberdeen City told delegates at a recent Ethos Network Roadshow in October at St. Andrew's Academy, Saltcoats, North Ayrshire that he believes that being a citizen means:

Having rights
Exercising responsibilities
Defending other people's rights
Having your own rights upheld and defended
Belonging to various communities
Participating in activities that affect the welfare of communities
Having opportunities to exercise personal choice
Making informed choices and decisions
Taking action based on these decisionsParticipating in politics

To do these things a citizen needs appropriate knowledge, skills, Terry Ashton addresses delegates at the roadshow in Saltcoatsattitudes and values. That, in a nutshell, is the aim of education for citizenship and leads on to other questions about citizenship, which include:

Should a citizen always be actively involved?
What does actively mean anyway?
How old do you have to be, to be a citizen?
What has good citizenship got to do with politics?
Does the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child have anything to do with citizenship?
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Terry has an excellent website full of useful information on citizenship and other guidance related topics: He can be contacted by email. Learning and Teaching Scotland's paper on
Education for Citizenship can be downloaded here.
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St. Andrew's Academy in Saltcoats, North Ayrshire was the venue for our recent Roadshow. Terry Ashton set the scene for lively discussions about citizenship in practice in the workshop sessions, which were led by teachers and pupils from Winton Primary School, Glencairn Primary School, Notre Dame High School and Ferguslie Primary School. A workshop from St. Andrew's Academy itself was called 'African Friendship' and reminded us that encouraging pupils to see themselves as world citizens is an important part of developing a positive school ethos and a tolerant multi-cultural society.

The photograph to the right shows delegates exchanging ideas with visiting Ghanian teacher, Kate Attipoe, during the workshop on 'African Friendship' at the Saltcoats roadshow.

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