What We Do
CIVIX provides experiential learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens. Instead of studying about democracy, they experience it first-hand with pertinent issues in real-time.
By practicing the habits of informed and engaged citizenship at an early age and nurturing these habits throughout adolescence, students will be more inclined and prepared to participate in their democracy when they reach voting age.
We work with educators to deliver programs in elementary and secondary schools across Canada. We offer free resources and innovative approaches so that educators can easily and effectively teach democracy and citizenship. Working within the school system allows us to reach all demographics, including those less likely to be engaged in our democracy and political system.
We have been working within the education system for the last 15 years, collaborating with teachers and education stakeholders. We have developed strong and supportive relationships with electoral agencies, as well as ministries of education and other government departments across the country. We are the trusted partner when it comes to elections, democracy and engaging students.
Coinciding with general elections, students under the voting age learn about government and the electoral process, research the parties and platforms, discuss relevant issues and cast ballots for their official election candidates. The results are shared publicly and with the media for broadcast and publication following the closing of the official polls.
Participating schools receive free pedagogical materials along with posters and election supplies to create an authentic voting experience. The program provides young Canadians with an opportunity to experience the voting process first-hand and practice the habits of informed and engaged citizenship.
Since 2003, our team has conducted 35 Student Vote programs: 5 federal, 20 provincial, 4 territorial and 6 municipal. In total, the Student Vote program has reached over 10 thousand schools and 4 million students across Canada.
The Student Budget Consultation program provides youth with an opportunity to learn about the government’s revenues and expenditures, discuss important political issues and suggested policies and offer their insights on the priorities of the upcoming budget. Student opinions are collected through a survey and results are shared with the Department or Ministry of Finance.
This program is linked to a wide variety of subject areas including: citizenship education, social studies and government, personal finance, economics, current affairs and media studies. The program aims to increase knowledge about government and public policy, improve financial literacy and encourage informed and active citizenship.
To date, CIVIX has conducted four Student Budget Consultations. Five thousand students participated in each of the 2013, 2014 and 2015 federal consultations and 1,300 were engaged in the Ontario provincial consultation in 2012. So far, more than 7,500 students have participated in the 2017 Student Budget Consultation survey.
- 2017 Federal Student Budget Consultation Results
- 2015 Federal Student Budget Consultation Results
- 2014 Federal Student Budget Consultation Results
- 2013 Federal Student Budget Consultation Results
- 2012 Ontario Student Budget Consultation Results
Rep Day is a nationwide civic education initiative that connects elected representatives with high school students to encourage dialogue on current political issues. Rep Day aims to break down negative stereotypes that young people have of politicians and the political process and for students to develop a better understanding of and sense of trust in the people and institutions within our democracy.
A successful pilot program took place in the fall of 2012 in Alberta and Saskatchewan for students to meet with their provincial representatives. CIVIX has delivered the Rep Day program with Members of Parliament since 2013.
The 2016 Rep Day program saw over half of all Members of Parliament – representing 12 provinces and territories and all five political parties represented in Parliament – visit classrooms in their riding, engaging in dialogue and answering students questions about issues that resonated with them.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to register for the 2017 program, and we would be happy to work towards organizing a visit from your MP into your classroom!
Democracy Bootcamp is a professional learning conference for elementary and secondary school teachers designed to improve their democratic engagement and instructional capacity, and enhance their delivery of the Student Vote program.
The first Democracy Bootcamp was held in April 2011 and brought together over 300 Ontario teachers in advance of their fall provincial election. Since then, CIVIX has trained over 1,000 teachers across Canada.