Civic Learning Award: Rio Americano High School

Rio Americano High School

San Juan Unified School District
County of: Sacramento
Civic Learning Award of: Excellence
Recognized for: Enhanced academics coupled with interaction with the community

Civic Learning Highlights

 Academia CIVITAS is an elective 4-year program that provides students with advanced civic learning. Students complete a minimum of 6 semesters of specialized civic learning honors courses in Political Science, State and Local Government, Speech, International Relations, and Philosophy of Political Thought. CIVITAS teachers pioneered the development of these rigorous classes, which all qualify as honors classes for the University of California. To complement these courses, students are also involved in community based civic action that includes 100 hours of service; an internship; and the completion of a civic-oriented senior project, reviewed by a panel of teachers, parents, and community members. 

Research-Based Civic Education Practices

This school demonstrates the following research-based best practices in civic education. For more information on research-based best practices, visit the Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools website.
  • Provide instruction in government, history, law and democracy, and avoid teaching only rote facts about dry procedures.
  • Discuss current local, national and international issues and events in the classroom, particularly those that young people view as important to their lives.
  • Conduct community service that is linked to the formal curriculum and classroom (Service-learning)
  • Offer extracurricular activities that provide opportunities for young people to get involved in their schools or communities.
  • Encourage student participation in school governance.
  • Encourage students’ participation in simulations of democratic process and procedures such as voting, trials, legislative deliberation, and diplomacy.

Contact Information

Linda Reed-Nikkel
4540 American River Drive
Sacramento, CA