Civility is the act of demonstrating kindness towards people with whom you disagree. Civility is an important and undervalued by-product of education. Our culture is in desperate need of more civility. Our culture has become so polarized; civil dialogue is virtually a lost art. If you do not believe me, peruse Facebook during election season.
Education produces civility in students. As a student understands more about different worldviews, they will manifest more empathy and cooperation. In one of my favorite quotes, Robert Frost anecdotally said, “Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper.” Our culture is more peaceful and desirable when different ideas produce civility instead of anger.
How does education effect civility? Education exposes the individual to new ideas, perspectives and experiences that foster civility. Learning is more than accumulating information, but it’s converting that information into beneficial behavior in society. Education has a unique platform to change the world through learners who become civil citizens. Without knowledge and its proper social applications, combative behavior will dominate society, instead of civility.
Education is a crucial path to civility.