Citation

Values allocation, ideological framing, and construction of citizenship: Tracking the flow of character education

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Abstract:

In recent years, the US and Canada have experienced a revival in character, values, and citizenship education (CE) throughout elementary and secondary schools. The resurgence of many such initiatives has been described as a response to fears over perceived decline in academic achievement and performance, increased pressures for economic competitiveness and human capital, perceived moral decline, safety and school violence, civic disengagement, and loss of common culture (Winton, 2008; Apple, 2006; Kohn, 1997; Sears & Hyslop-Margison, 2007). The US inception of the Character Education Partnership (CEP) and the Character Counts! CEP Movement at the 1992 Aspen Summit Declaration on Character Education (CEP 1992; Josephson Institute, 1992), have not only served to inform the No Child Left Behind legislation (NCLB Sec. 5431, 2001); CEP researchers and members of the CEP board of directors have also been at the forefront of the development of Ontario’s character education policy, Finding Common Ground: Character Development in Ontario Schools K-12, or FCG (Ontario Ministry of Education, 2008; Anderson, 2010).

I begin by tracing the influence of the CEP within the character education policies of Ontario and New York state. Focusing on the ideological role of CE policy, I move to propose a framework for the analysis of its core ideological functions, namely: the normative framing, prioritization, and allocation of values as supported by dominant discourses and interests (Rizvi & Lingard, 2010); the construction of a particular conception of the ‘good citizen’ reflective of a corresponding ideological orientation (Westheimer & Kahne, 2004); the naturalization of values, beliefs, and ‘social myths’ which, in turn, have the potential to shape students’ socio-political attitudes, students’ perceptions of their current context and future possibilities, accordingly (Sidanius & Pratto, 1999). I conclude by drawing attention to hierarchy enhancing versus equity enhancing ideologies.

Author's Keywords:

character education, values education,
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Association:
Name: 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society
URL:
http://www.cies.us


Citation:
URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p494208_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Stepien, Magdalena. "Values allocation, ideological framing, and construction of citizenship: Tracking the flow of character education" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Apr 30, 2011 <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p494208_index.html>

APA Citation:

Stepien, M. , 2011-04-30 "Values allocation, ideological framing, and construction of citizenship: Tracking the flow of character education" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p494208_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: In recent years, the US and Canada have experienced a revival in character, values, and citizenship education (CE) throughout elementary and secondary schools. The resurgence of many such initiatives has been described as a response to fears over perceived decline in academic achievement and performance, increased pressures for economic competitiveness and human capital, perceived moral decline, safety and school violence, civic disengagement, and loss of common culture (Winton, 2008; Apple, 2006; Kohn, 1997; Sears & Hyslop-Margison, 2007). The US inception of the Character Education Partnership (CEP) and the Character Counts! CEP Movement at the 1992 Aspen Summit Declaration on Character Education (CEP 1992; Josephson Institute, 1992), have not only served to inform the No Child Left Behind legislation (NCLB Sec. 5431, 2001); CEP researchers and members of the CEP board of directors have also been at the forefront of the development of Ontario’s character education policy, Finding Common Ground: Character Development in Ontario Schools K-12, or FCG (Ontario Ministry of Education, 2008; Anderson, 2010).

I begin by tracing the influence of the CEP within the character education policies of Ontario and New York state. Focusing on the ideological role of CE policy, I move to propose a framework for the analysis of its core ideological functions, namely: the normative framing, prioritization, and allocation of values as supported by dominant discourses and interests (Rizvi & Lingard, 2010); the construction of a particular conception of the ‘good citizen’ reflective of a corresponding ideological orientation (Westheimer & Kahne, 2004); the naturalization of values, beliefs, and ‘social myths’ which, in turn, have the potential to shape students’ socio-political attitudes, students’ perceptions of their current context and future possibilities, accordingly (Sidanius & Pratto, 1999). I conclude by drawing attention to hierarchy enhancing versus equity enhancing ideologies.


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