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Fostering citizenship in marginalised children through participation in Community of Philosophical Inquiry

Cassidy, Claire and Marwick, Helen and Deeney, Lynn and McLean, Gillian and Rogers, Kirsten (2017) Fostering citizenship in marginalised children through participation in Community of Philosophical Inquiry. Education, Citizenship and Social Justice. ISSN 1746-1979

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Given the key drivers around citizenship education, children’s rights, voice, and participation it is essential that all children are supported to engage in the society in which they live. This article explores how Community of Philosophical Inquiry (CoPI) might offer that support to children who are potentially marginalised due to their specific needs. The article presents three case studies of children at risk of being marginalised in school settings who participated in CoPI over a period of ten weeks. CoPI has features that may be conducive to the achievement of broad goals associated with children’s voice and citizenship education. The article explores the ways in which these particular children engaged with CoPI and the impact of participation on their behaviour. The analysis of the accounts of their teachers supports the hypothesis that potentially marginalised children appear to benefit from the structure that is inherent in this form of practical philosophy.