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Civics and Citizenship Network
International 'Student News Bureau'
JSC previous years
JSC submitted applications
MUNC previous events
MUNC primary schools
Schools' State Constitutional Convention 2013
State SCC 2013 - student preparation and supporting resources
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Welcome to the Civics and Citizenship wikispace
This is your one stop shop for Civics and Citizenship Education activities, events, resources and international projects and activities.
The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Victoria in collaboration with the Catholic Education Commission Victoria, Indpendent Schools Victoria, Social Education Victoria and Parliament of Victoria provide activities for students and teachers that model and highlight values based approaches to civics and citizenship. These are designed to develop youth agency, particularly student voice, social responsibility, ethical behaviour and intercultural understanding.
Latest news 2013
The third annual JSC Congress will be held in Parliament House, Victoria on
Monday 18 November 2013
The topic is:
We are citizens too! What we do can make a difference.
Victorian primary schools can apply for up to three students, grades 5 & 6 to attend the 2013 State Junior School Council Congress. Principals and teachers should read the
information for principals and teachers
Applications for the 2013 State Junior School Council Congress are now closed.
Essential fact sheets for those attending the Congress:
information for student delegates
consent form for electronic recording
2013 Schools' State Constitutional Convention
was held at Parliament House, Spring St Melbourne on Monday 21 October.
The event was open to senior secondary students Year 9 -12 who has attended a regional convention, Model UN Conference or other UN activity, YMCA Youth Parliament or were recommended by their schools.
* For further information, advice and resources please visit the 'State SCC 2013' page
* If you are interested in running a Student Convention in 2014, click the link below to access the handbook.
2013 Student Convention handbook
(includes background information and ideas for setting up your own convention).
Contact Gary Shaw
or Social Education Victoria
for more information.
Regional Convention at Mater Christi
Mater Chrisiti College is hosting a regional convention on the issue refugees for year 11 students on 6th September 2013.
Speakers include Koah Do, 2005 Young Australian of the Year and Brian Cowlwy, St Vincents de Paul Regional President.
Mater Christi College is proudly hosting its annual Refugee Convention which will bring together year 11 students from a range of schools to discuss and listen to various key note speakers on the topic of refugees. It is an insightful day that allows students to construct an informed opinion and take part in arange of exciting activities.
For further information contact Amanda Bischof-Foster
Civics and Citizenship Network
hosted a teacher professional learning day (focus on CCE) on
Monday August 5
to visit the CCN page and for more information about this network and the CCE Professional Learning Day.
Social Education Victoria
is working with Gary Shaw to maintain aspects of this site and some of the excellent programs that have been conducted in this learning area. Please contact
if you would like any further information about Civics and Citizenship Education opportunities or are seeking professional learning and resource advice.
Be part of the 8th UNESCO Youth Forum:
Call for action projects driven by young people
Are you member of a youth-led or youth-focused organization, a project leader or a young entrepreneur who is active in an established NGO?
Have you got creative and innovative ideas related to one of the 7 themes of the
8th UNESCO Youth Forum
which will take place at UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, from 29 to 31 October 2013 (social inclusion, civic engagement and participation, social entrepreneurship and innovation, prevention of violence and conflicts, intercultural dialogue, democracy and skills development)?
Then, read this message attentively and share it with your friends!
The following information will interest you!
You can become one of the young actors driving social change
, as part of the UNESCO Youth Forum,
by sending us your proposal for an innovative action project
to be implemented in your community, country or region,
by 12 August 2013
International Youth Day!
For the first time in its history, the UNESCO Youth Forum will be placed under the global theme “Youth and Social Inclusion: civic engagement, dialogue and skills development”, will select 15 youth-led action projects, representing all of the world’s regions, and award them witha UNESCO Youth Forum Label. The label will be a mark of quality and feasibility, and a concrete recognition of the young initiators of the winning projects, offering a boost in their work. It will also be a starting point for the implementation of the projects, by helping to mobilize support, funds, partnerships and international visibility.
By the end of September 2013, out of all the proposals received from 15 July to 12 August 2013, an international independent jury will pre-select 45 projects and their initiators will be invited to submit an original and creative one-minute video describing their project so that these 45 short films can be visible online by mid-October 2013. The 45 pre-selected projects will then be discussed by the young participants of the
8th UNESCO Youth Forum
. Finally, 15 youth-led action projects (3 youth-led action projects per the five UNESCO regions) will be selected to be announced on 31 October 2013 and presented to
the 37th UNESCO General Conference
in November 2013.
To submit a project proposal
**the on-line form**
Allowing young people to submit recommendations to 195 UNESCO’s Member States’ representatives at the highest decision-making level, the UNESCO Youth Forum brings together, every two years, at the eve of the UNESCO General Conference, around 400 young participants from all over the world to exchange views, share experiences, reflect together and, above all, detect common preoccupations and problems.
As expounded in its
UNESCO Youth Strategy 2014-2021
UNESCO recognizes youth as key drivers of peace and development and agents for positive change. The Organization strives to promote youth-led actions across the globe by offering face-to-face support and help in putting ideas of young women and men into practice.
For any questions, please write to
The 2013 Global Peace Index has been released
This is the seventh edition of the Global Peace Index (GPI), which ranks nations according to their level of peace. It is composed of 22 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources, which gauge three broad themes: the level of safety and security in society; the extent of domestic or international conflict; and the degree of militarisation. The 2013 GPI has been expanded to rank 162 independent states and updated with the latest available figures and information.
Some useful links for global citizenship project activity
International School Peace Garden Project
There are a number of 'Lighthouse Schools' around the world that provide excellent examples of how International School Peace Gardens have improved the social and learning environments of their schools. Lighthouse Schools include: St. Agnes Catholic School in Chatham Ontario, the University Laboratory School in Honolulu Hawaii, and Port Elliot Primary School in Port Elliot South Australia.
Project Noah was created to provide people of all ages with a simple way to share their experiences with wildlife globally.
World Wide Voyage
Curriculum resources particularly for sustainability. The
Polynesian Voyaging Society is developing curriculum to share with teachers during the statewide sail (Hawaii) and Worldwide Voyage of
in 2013, that is coming to Australia. Students can follow the progress of the voyage
Regional Constitutional Conventions
Regional Conventions are hosted by individual schools and the students participate in debates and workshops on a specific topic. The Convention program provides an important forum in which students can speak out and be heard in a formal context, and it encourages them to seriously consider constitutional issues which affect them personally and politically.
Many schools use this as an opportunity to get their students involved so as to expose them to the different aspects of running an event.
There are two regional conventions scheduled for the first half of the year
Friday 17 May 2013
Thornbury High School
238 Collins St, Thornbury
Australia's refugee policy - solution or a breach of human rights
Time 10am - 2.30pm Contact: Ms Preeti Maharaj
or alternatively register interest on the Edmodo page (group code; iuug4 or ring9458 6163 by Monday 15 April
Our opening speakers are Alex Bhathal the Greens Party candidate for the federal seat of Batman and a representative from the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre. Each school team will be expected to present their position on the topic up for discussion after which small group discussion will occur. Further information and a delegate pack will be provided upon registering your interest.
Students should bring pens and paper to take notes that will assist them on the day and will also be required to be in full school uniform. Morning tea and lunch will be provided, as well as refreshments.
Friday 26 April 2013
St Catherine’s School 17 Heyington Place, Toorak
That we should lower the voting age in Australia to 16 years
9.30am arrival for a 10.00am start (Students seated by 9.45am) Program concludes at 3.00pm
Contact by email
by Friday 19 April 2013.
If you are sending more than 10 students, we ask that a staff member is in attendance all day to supervise. Speakers: Ms Sue Pennicuik (Greens) MLC Southern Metropolitan Region Mr David Zeplin – Divisional Returning Officer, Australian Electoral Commission will run an “official” referendum at the conclusion of debates.
Students should bring lunch, drinks, pens, paper and relevant materials. Morning tea will be provided for all students and staff. Lunch for staff will also be provided
Background reading material will be emailed to schools who register prior to the term break.
Regional Conventions for 2012 that have
2013 National Convention
The Victorian delegation to the 2013 National Schools' Consitutional Convention
Victoria delegation in Canberra
The 2013 National Schools Constitutional Convention was held in Canberra from the 20 - 22 March. The topic was
Recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in the Constitution
. Victoria sent a delgation of 25 students and 3 teachers selected from the state and regional conventions held during 2012. The Convention was held in Old Parliament House and delegates meet their local federal representatives and watched Question Time in New Parliament House. Education Minister Peter Garrett represented the Prime Minister in welcoming delegates to the Convention. Delegates also attended a reception at Government House hosted by Governor General. Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO and had a dinner hosted by the High Court.
NSCC Communique 2013.pdf
was produced through the Convention to document proceedings and outcomes of the debates.
A report by Catherine Dent, Siena College
Thank you so much for the opportunity to attend the 18th National Schools Constitutional Convention. It was a great few days where I learnt so much. As an Australian, it taught me that we must accept what existed in the darker side of our history and to find the light in the present by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land.
The event helped me to consider the political questions of our time in ways I hadn't thought of before. Also, the chance to visit some important landmarks of Australian democracy and meet some great leaders was truly inspirational.
I sincerely thank you for the rewarding experience.
A report by Margaret Appiagyei, Hoppers Crossing Secondary College
The topic for consideration for the Convention was recognition of the Aborginal Australians in the Constitution. On our first day we were able to visit the National Archives of Australia and the Museum of Australian Democracy. Students also got to meet their federal representative at Parliament House. Unfortunately my representative Julia Gillard, couldn't make it due to the leadership spill. Peter Garret, Minister for Education provided the offical welcome and we had an reception hosted by the Governor-General Quentin Bryce at Government House. I was pleased that I was able to meet and have a conversation with the Governor General.
Second day was spent at the Old Parliament House where guest speakers such as the Hon Jacinta Collins spoke about the omission of Aboriginals from the Constitution and why it is important in the context of reconciliation and human rights to rectify this. We then divided into smaller groups to discuss the issue and consider our position. That night dinner was held at the High Court of Australia and guest speaker was justice Stephen Gageler.
The last day was again spent at the Old Parliament house where a referendum was held along state lines. A majority of students voted yes on the rights of Aboriginal Australians to be recognized in the consitution. The Convention was offically closed by the Hon John Hogg.
UNESCO YOUTH FORUM 2013
UNESCO has launched a broad-based online consultation for the preparation of the
8th UNESCO Youth Forum
, which will take place at UNESCO HQ, Paris, in October 2013.
This consultation is meant to enable youth and all other related stakeholders to contribute to the preparation of the Forum, from shaping its thematic agenda to deciding on its format and outcome! The consultation will be conducted through an online questionnaire, in a phased manner:
The Forum is expected to lead to specific and tangible recommendations and, this year, to youth-led action projects that will allow their implementation in 2014-2015, leading up to the next UNESCO Youth Forum.
The Forum is an integral part of the UNESCO General Conference, highest decision-making body in the Organization. It was initiated in 1999 as a way to bridge the gap between UNESCO’s work and youth organizations. Youth delegates from UNESCO Member-States, youth activists and members of youth organizations “own” the content and outputs of the Forum and are leading follow-up work. More
than a one-off event taking place, the Forum is a 2-year process
that enables youth to submit their recommendations to representatives of 195 Member-States, while at the same time mobilizing these youth in undertaking concrete follow-up action to support the implementation of their ideas.
For more information on the UNESCO Youth Forum:
For more information on the 7th UNESCO Youth Forum (October 2011):
The UNESCO Youth Programme
The Department of Human Services acknowledges that the success of the Victorian Government's Advance program relies heavily on the teachers charged with its delivery.
In acknowledgement of this vital role, Advance has teamed up with Awards Victoria to deliver a professional development event for coordinators on:
Tuesday 30 April 2013 (9am to 3pm) at the Supper Room, Melbourne Town Hall.
Join Advance and Awards Victoria, with special guest speakers Glenn Manton (former Carlton Football Club player and co-founder of Whitelion) and Nathan Strempel (Dukes Roving Reporter Ambassador), for an opportunity to explore:
the foundations of successful Advance programs and how positive community relationships are built through the program
strategies and resources that support young people's role in decision making and improving student engagement
successes and challenges experienced by young people participating in Advance the various programs available through Awards Victoria and their links with Advance.
to find out more about this event
Passport to Democracy
Looking for ways to engage secondary students in citizenship education in 2013?
Passport to Democracy
is an interactive way of involving students in understanding how Australian democracy works and how to investigate and address local issues. Developed by the Victorian Electoral Commission the kit is free and comes with a range of class activities and resources, including passports, voting screen and ballot box. With the kit you can run mock elections, formulate local action plans and work towards democratic solutions to local problems.
2012 Junior School Council Congress
The second annual
was held in Parliament House, Victoria on Monday 19 November. Students from 15 schools discussed and debated the challenges and opportunities of on line communication. The day was facilitated by the team from Second Strike headed by David Mould. Students from the VicSRC Executive did brilliantly in the role of Speaker.
Minister for Education, Martin Dixon opened proceedings. Students from Buckley Park Secondary College provided the keynote address on their projects in integrating Facebook and Youtube and other social media into the school program.
More information about the event, motions debated and photographs will be posted shortly.
Please see supporting
used by students in debating the motions including a short video about Buckley Park College's fantastic project using social media.
2012 School's State Constitutional Convention on TV
on Thursday the 29 November at 4pm for a program on the 2012 Schools' State Convention. The program willalso be available to watch online on
for about 6 weeks.
For more news, please see our
latest news section
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