Civics for All
The mission of Civics for All (CFA) is to cultivate civically ready students across NYC Public Schools K-12 by collaborating with teachers, education leaders, and partners. by collaborating with teachers, education leaders, and partners. We strongly commit to developing teacher capacity to harness democratic practices in all schools, empowering students to develop civics skills, knowledge, and mindsets. By providing comprehensive resources, professional opportunities, and teacher-developed tools, we strive to establish vibrant learning environments where students demonstrate the necessary skills and disposition to protect and expand our democratic ideals. Through collaborative external partnerships, we activate student and teacher learning, bringing democracy in New York City to life. Together with districts, school communities, and external partners, we champion student voice, support teachers' civic instruction, and build democratic classrooms across grades K-12. Our goal is to foster a lifelong commitment to civic action, enabling students to positively impact their local and global communities. CFA’s initiatives include:
- Civics Week
- Student Voter Registration Drive
- Civics for All Poster Contest
- Participatory Budgeting In Your Schools Program
- Seal of Civic Readiness
- The New York State Seal of Civic Readiness (NYSSCR)
- Civics for All Comics Group
Each year, New York City Public Schools recognize Civics Week in March. Civics Week is a time for schools across the city to celebrate youth voice, civic empowerment, and the importance of registering to vote. Civics Week includes efforts to get every young person to understand that their voice matters and that they can create change as active participants in their community. During the week, K-12 schools across the City celebrate youth voice, civic empowerment, and the importance of registering to vote.
Student Voter Registration Drive
As an integral part of Civics Week each year, the DOE hosts an annual Student Voter Registration drive for U.S. citizens who are 16 or older. This year’s student voter registration drive will take place in NYCDOE high schools in mid-March.
Civics for All Poster Contest
New York City students in grades K through 12 are invited each year during Civics Week to showcase their civic engagement and artistic talent by participating in the annual NYCDOE Civics for All Poster Contest. The annual poster contest encourages students to:
- Learn about important issues
- Realize why student voice matters
- Understand and amplify why voting and active civic participation are important
SoapboxNYC is a public speaking competition that calls on students to speak out about issues that affect them and their communities. Students create and advocate for solutions to improve their schools, communities, and the lives of other young people.
Participatory Budgeting In Your Schools Program
Participatory Budgeting (PB) is one of the components of Civics for All's Partner School Program. PB is a student-driven, democratic budgeting process where school community members decide how to spend part of a budget on something to improve the school community.
Seal of Civic Readiness
The New York State Seal of Civics Readiness (NYSSCR) is a distinction on student diplomas that encourages civic knowledge and participation through experiential learning and youth voice, leadership, and action. It lets employers and post-secondary institutions know that students have developed the competencies central to being an active member of a community and society. In addition to serving as a special endorsement on student diplomas, the Seal of Civic Readiness is a graduation pathway, meaning it can stand in for the fifth Regents exam for a Regents or Local diploma.
Civics for All Comics Group
The Department of Social Studies and Civics' Civics for All Comics Group began as a collaboration between the New York CityPublic Schools, creators Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey, and Good Trouble Productions with the publishing of Action Activists #1 and Registered #1 in 2020. Since then, the comics group imprint has grown, developing social studies and civics comics as companions to several of our resources.