Citizenship, as the National Assessment of Educational Progress explains, is the “engine of constitutional democracy and a free society” and knowing our rights and responsibilities as citizens “fuels that engine.” Democratic societies do not function without the participation of informed and responsible citizens. Civic education, therefore, is one of public education’s central missions. The education of the next generation of citizens is essential to the well-being of American constitutional democracy. And, effective civic education also is important to civil society—that historically essential sector of society composed of non-governmental, voluntary, community, fraternal organizations, clubs, and religious institutions