We will Untangle Public Policy for children, following a 4-week program, and contextualising learning from self to global level.
The first week will be introductory in nature. It will expose students to the basic concepts of public policy and social development. It will pose questions on the basic tenants of the course: “what is public policy?”, “why is it important?” and “why should I/we care about it?” and we will gather collaborative answers to these. We will also focus on the different levels of the government and the important stakeholders (such as individual citizens, NGOs, media, etc.). The lessons of this week will introduce students to the process of policy formulation – identification of problem, thinking of solutions and monitoring implementation and the tools required to do so. All the lessons will be contextualised through examples and activities focusing on the self, that is, students as individual actors. We will curate individual and group activities to draw from students’ lives and their immediate environment, particularly, the household.
The second week will focus on the inter-personal, introducing students to the concepts of equality and respect for difference and thus, exemplifying the saying, “unity in diversity”. We will begin by understanding how mismanaged and unrecognised inter-personal differences can lead to conflict and how these can be effectively managed. In the following sessions of the week, we will look at particular vectors of inter-personal differences, including but not limited to, gender, disability, religion, caste and race. We will draw on examples relevant to students’ lives and their wellbeing and will curate individual and group activities to not only discuss these issues but to also find solutions to them and to help each other as a community.
During the third week, we will do a deep-dive into local and national governance structures and policy processes. Having being introduced to the policy process and inter-personal relations in the previous weeks, we will focus on a local/national issue which is important to students. In each session, we will focus on only one element of the policy process so students gain a more in-depth understanding. In doing so, we will incorporate a very important element of the policy process (and for professional success in general), research (primary and secondary), through activities.
The fourth week will introduce students to global governance structures and their roles as global citizens. We will focus on the importance of global citizenship in today’s interconnected world and its understanding on their personal and professional success. We will do so by looking at a truly global policy issue – climate change. We will think individually and collectively about the problem of climate change and the role of the global community in curbing it. The final session will culminate into a student-led mock United Nations sessions where they will assume roles as global citizens of today and global leaders of tomorrow.