Citizens Now is a 12-week after-school program conceived and implemented by ICE to teach 5th and 6th graders at Chicago’s Public Schools the skills of citizenship and the importance of participating and working with others in our democracy. 


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  • The first 13 students from Newton Bateman Elementary School in Irving Park graduated from the Citizens Now program in May 2015.

  • Quantitative analysis of the program pre/post-questionnaire showed positive improvements on questions testing students’ knowledge and self-reported communication with adults and peers.

  • 60 additional "young citizens" graduated from Chalmers, Dvorak, DePriest and Penn Elementary Schools in North Lawndale and Austin in 2016-17. 

  • 43 additional “young citizens” graduated from Chalmers, Dvorak, Johnson and Penn Elementary Schools in North Lawndale in 2017-18. 

Ideally, in my dream, the Citizens Now program would be available for every student.
— Former Assistant Principal Efrain Martinez, Newton Bateman Elementary School, Irving Park, Chicago

Anastacia Jackson (Participant of the Citizens Now Program for 3 years) speaks with Rapheal Arteberry (Citizens Now Program Lead Facilitator) 5/30/2019.