Project Citizen


Empower students to work toward equitable and dynamic civic communities through Project Citizen.

Project Citizen is a curriculum for upper elementary, middle, secondary, post-secondary students, and youth organizations, that promotes competent and responsible participation in local and state government. Students work together to identify a problem in their community, study policy issues related to the problem, develop a solution to the problem, and create an action plan for implementing their policy. In a culminating activity, students present their policy in a simulated legislative hearing, demonstrating their knowledge and understanding of how public policy is formulated.

Textbooks and Teacher’s Guides are available for grades 5-8 and 9-12. For more information, see the Project Citizen curriculum page on the the national Center for Civic Education website.

As a teacher, I love that Project Citizen is incredibly easy to lead, with such simple steps to follow, and yet is one of the most empowering projects my students engage in all year. During a particularly challenging year, introducing students to the process of researching, writing and ultimately presenting public policy fosters such a feeling of critical hope.

Kara CiscoTeacher - St. Louis Park High School

I really enjoyed knowing I had a positive impact on school policy and that people actually listened to what students had to say.

Sophia J9th Grade Student

My students are learning by doing. This is giving them a perspective on government that they would never get from a book.

June NatolaTeacher - Fecteau-Leary Middle School

I really liked how we could break off and work on what we were best at individually and then put it together to make something we’re all proud of.

Nolan H9th grade student


WHAT is the Project Citizen Research Program?

Together with its partners, MCCE will be conducting a year-long professional learning program around Project Citizen for 2022-2023 academic year, beginning in July, 2022. The program is part of a research study about increasing civic knowledge, skills, and dispositions, led by Georgetown University.

Benefits for participating teachers include:

  • Tools for inquiry-led, project-based, and SEL-informed instruction
  • A classroom set of Project Citizen materials
  • Participation in a summer institute 7/31-8/4/22 in Grand Rapids, MI
  • A stipend and travel reimbursement
  • Instructional support throughout the school year
  • Strategies for meaningful community engagement
  • Engagement with a community of change agents and difference-makers

WHO can apply?

K-12 teachers in any setting may apply! If you teach in one of the ten states in our designated region (Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, West Virginia, and Minnesota), apply here. If you teach in a different region, contact your state coordinator. Teachers are welcome to apply with teams of teachers from their own school across all subject areas. We would love teams that are ready to solve real-world problems using multiple disciplines like science, art, math, design, language arts, and of course social studies!

WHEN and WHERE will it take place?

Participating teachers will do Project Citizen in their own schools and communities during the 2022-23 school year. An in-person professional learning institute for participating teachers will take place July 31-Aug 4, 2022, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and online and local learning opportunities will take place throughout the year.

HOW MUCH does it cost to participate?

Don’t worry, we have you covered! There is no cost to teachers or schools to participate. In fact, participating teachers receive a modest stipend upon completion of the program.

HOW do I apply?

Let your school administration know you plan to apply, and then click the orange button below to fill out the online form. Completing the form should take no more than 10 minutes.

Want to help with the Project Citizen Research Program but can’t do Project Citizen in your classroom next year? We need “control” teachers for the research study — you just need to give a test twice to your students and complete a test twice yourself, once at the beginning and once at the end of the school year. Control teachers will be paid $100. Apply to be a control teacher here.


See our FAQ!