What We Do

CIVIX provides authentic learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens, and connect with their democratic institutions. Instead of studying about democracy from a textbook, they experience it first-hand with real issues in real-time.

Student Vote

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 more than 40 Student Vote programs. The Student Vote for the 2019 federal election, Student Vote Canada 2019, saw 1.2 million ballots cast from more than 8,000 Canadian schools.

CIVIX Information Literacy

One of the most urgent issues facing democracies today is the spread of ‘fake news.’ Being able to determine what is fact or fiction online has become an essential skill of citizenship in the digital age.

Launched in 2018, CIVIX’s information literacy initiative aims to help students in Grades 5 to 12 build the skills and habits to support informed citizenship.

To learn more, visit newsliteracy.ca.

Student Budget Consultation

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 seven Student Budget Consultations projects. 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. More than 6,000 students participated in the 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Student Budget Consultation projects. Educators can register for the 2021 Student Budget Consultation here

Rep Day

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. 

CIVIX has delivered the Rep Day program with Members of Parliament since 2013. In 2016, the 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. The 2016-2017 Rep Day program connected 9,000 students with more than 90 MPs from across Canada. During the 2017-2018 school year, 65 visits were coordinated in 9 provinces and 2 territories, and more than 3,700 elementary and high school students had the opportunity to engage with their federal MP.

Please contact [email protected] if you would like to register your classroom, and we would be happy to work towards organizing a visit from your MP!

Democracy Bootcamp

Democracy Bootcamp is a professional development conference for teachers designed to improve their democratic engagement and delivery of CIVIX programming. By sharing an insider’s look at campaigns, exploring research and trends, and introducing new tools for citizenship, Democracy Bootcamp enhances teachers’ capacity and commitment to civic education.

The first Democracy Bootcamp was held in April 2011 and brought together over 300 Ontario teachers in advance of the fall provincial election.