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Citizenship Challenge

 Our annual essay contest where students tackle tough issues facing our democracy

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Every fall, The Rendell Center’s Citizenship Challenge takes place in Philadelphia. It is a unique opportunity for 4-5th grade classes in the 5-county Philadelphia area to express themselves regarding a current issue facing our democracy.

Classroom teams are asked to write an essay that addresses their point of view on the assigned issue. Teams take one position and defend their argument in a concise written document of a minimum of 300 words. The contest is drawn from PA Civics standards relating to principles and documents of government; rights and responsibilities of citizens; and information on how government works.

From all entries submitted ten finalists are selected and invited to make a final presentation of their essay during Bill of Rights Week each December. All expenses are paid by The Rendell Center.

Annual Prizes

  • 1 GRAND PRIZE of $1,000: The first place school will receive a check to be used toward a program that promotes civics learning and engagement across the student body.
  • 3 RUNNER-UP PRIZES of $500: Each of the three runner-up schools will receive a check to be used toward a program that promotes civics learning and engagement across the student body.
  • Top 10 Entries: The top 10 finalist schools will receive classroom copies of the We the Civics Kids curriculum as well as a civics library for their school.

The Next Citizenship Challenge

Check back soon for information on the 2018 Citizenship Challenge.

Who is Eligible? The Challenge is open to 4th and 5th grade classes enrolled in public, private, or parochial school, or home study program in the 5-county Philadelphia area (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Philadelphia, and Montgomery Counties). Information is available by contacting Beth Specker at bspecker@rendellcenter.org.

 

Students deliver their essay on the issue of the Electoral College vs. the Popular Vote.

Ten finalists are chosen each year to defend their position on an issue facing our democracy.