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Rendell Center for Civics Moves to Penn’s Annenberg Public Policy Center

PHILADELPHIA (March 4, 2015) – The Rendell Center for Civics & Civic Engagement has moved its headquarters to the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, and the two institutions will collaborate on projects to strengthen civics education in schools, it was announced today.

The Rendell Center, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization led by Judge Marjorie O. Rendell of the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, will be working with the policy center on educating young people and promoting civic engagement. The Rendell Center has focused on civics-curriculum development for children in the lower grades, while the Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC), through its Leonore Annenberg Institute for Civics, has concentrated on civics in middle and high school.

“I’m looking forward to working with the Annenberg Public Policy Center to have an even greater impact on civics education,” said Judge Rendell, the chair of the Rendell Center. Judge Rendell, who co-founded the center with her husband, former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, announced in January that she will be moving to “senior status” with the 3rd Circuit this summer, giving her a lessened case load and more time to devote to civics education.

Rendell Center logo

APPC Director Kathleen Hall Jamieson said, “This is an alliance of two strong partners with the same mission – improving the quality of civics education in the nation. The civics programming that Judge Rendell and the Rendell Center have created for the younger grades is a perfect complement to the work that APPC’s Leonore Annenberg Institute for Civics has developed for high schoolers.”

“We at Penn are honored and delighted to partner with the Rendell Center,” said University of Pennsylvania President Amy Gutmann. “The Center’s goal of buttressing a robust civics education for young people aligns beautifully with the ideals of Penn’s founder Benjamin Franklin, and mirrors the University’s own long-standing commitment to civic engagement. I commend Judge Rendell and Governor Rendell, both stalwart friends and alumni of the University, for this praiseworthy work.”

Judge Marjorie O. Rendell oversees the Citizenship Challenge at the National Constitution Center in December 2014.
Judge Marjorie O. Rendell oversees the Citizenship Challenge at the National Constitution Center in December 2014.

The Rendell Center originated with Judge Rendell’s initiative as First Lady of Pennsylvania, PennCORD, the Pennsylvania Coalition for Representative Democracy. Continuing her civic education activities, Judge Rendell, joined by former Governor Rendell, created the Rendell Center at Arcadia University in 2013 in collaboration with the National Constitution Center. Arcadia and the Constitution Center will continue to work with the Rendell Center in its new home at the University of Pennsylvania.

“Midge and I are excited to continue the important work of educating our youth on their role as citizens,” said Gov. Rendell. “I have long believed that one of the biggest challenges facing the nation is the lack of citizen engagement and participation.”

For the full release click here.