Standards for Virginia and United States Government define the knowledge that enables citizens to participate effectively in civic and economic life. Students will examine fundamental constitutional principles, the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, the political culture, the policy-making process at each level of government, and the operation of the United States market economy. The standards identify the personal character traits that facilitate thoughtful and effective participation in the civic life of an increasingly diverse democratic society.

Civic education also must emphasize the intellectual skills required for responsible citizenship. Students will practice these skills as they extend their understanding of the essential knowledge defined by the standards for Virginia and United States Government.