Appropriate education on politics and democracy is vital in schools if voting age is lowered
The Political Studies Association, in conjunction with the University of Huddersfield, will be hosting a Teaching Political Studies Teachers' Workshop to be held at on Friday 24th October 2014 from 9.30am to 4pm.
As part of its commitment to developing links between policy-makers, academics and teachers, the Association is bringing together leading political education specialists to discuss the teaching of politics in secondary and further education schools and colleges.
The workshop will feature a range of presentations alongside a keynote session by Dr Andrew Mycock, University of Huddersfield and co-editor of Beyond the Youth Citizenship Commission: Young People and Politics. Additionally, AQA's Qualifications Developer for Social Sciences will be leading the plenary session to outline how the politics curriculum is developing in line with the A-level reforms and more generally his thoughts about political education and the social sciences in schools.
Announcing the workshop, Dr Mycock said:
“Debates about the state of British democracy in recent years have often drawn attention to a decline of young people participating in conventional politics and rising levels of political disengagement. These concerns are founded on evidence of reduced turnouts in national or local elections, declining membership of political parties, and the low standing of politicians who continuously suffer criticism from sizeable sections of the public.
“Discussion of lowering the voting age to 16 years of age in some or all UK elections in order to encourage political participation amongst the youth has been furthered by the positive role of young newly-enfranchised voters in the Scottish independence referendum. 16 and 17 year-olds were seen to contribute enthusiastically and knowledgably to public debate about Scotland's constitutional future, thus strengthening the argument for younger voters to be included in future elections.
“The teaching of politics, both as a discrete subject and as part of wider citizenship education programmes, is crucial to develop the political knowledge and skills necessary for young people to become active political citizens. If the voting age is to be lowered, it is vital that young citizens are given appropriate education to develop political literacy and opportunities to democratically participate in their schools and local communities.”
The event will be of significant benefit to all politics and citizenship educators in schools and colleges.
Places for the workshop are still available and registration is open online at: www.psa.ac.uk.
For further information or to interview Dr Andrew Mycock, please contact the PSA: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Telephone: 020 7321 2545