Widespread global interest and adoption of deliberative democracy approaches to reinvigorate citizenship and policymaking in an era of democratic crisis/decline has been mirrored by increasing interest in deliberation in schools, both as an approach to pedagogy and student empowerment and as a training ground for deliberative citizenship. In school deliberation, as in other settings, a key and sometimes neglected element of high-quality deliberation is facilitation. Facilitation can help to establish and maintain deliberative norms, assist participants to deliberate productively, and enable collective goals. By participating in facilitated deliberation, students can develop awareness, skills, and voice that empower them to engage with democracy, in school and beyond. This article draws on our experience as scholar/practitioners running a Deliberation in Schools program in Australia to explore challenges and strategies for deliberative facilitation. The challenges we discuss are power, inequality, diversity of expression and knowledge, and disagreement and these are discussed in the general context of inclusiveness. We highlight two facets of deliberative facilitation—technique and design—that are important for dealing with these challenges and increasing inclusion in school deliberation and in democratic deliberation more generally.
, Russell, A. W.
, Chalaye, P.
, Greenwell, T.
Deliberative Facilitation in the Classroom: The Interplay of Facilitative Technique and Design to Make Space for Democracy.
Democracy and Education,
(1), Article 4.
Available at: https://democracyeducationjournal.org/home/vol31/iss1/4