STUDENT VOICE & Leadership

Our Action Civics Model

Action civics is a curricular approach that centers student voice, expertise and civic participation. In action civics, students identify a problem relevant to their lives, conduct systematic research to understand the problem, develop a policy solution, and communicate a call to action for public audiences. Action civics is the foundation of all SVL programming.

Our SVL action civics model was developed in partnership with the Critical Civic Inquiry (CCI) research group (CCI). The research practice partnership is centered on equity-focused student voice and school transformation. As part of its partnerships, CCI offers youth trainings, adult professional development, and curricular tools that support youth voice, critical social theory, participatory action research, and leadership development. Click here for more information on CCI.

Student Voice & Leadership



YAALL is a district youth civic action team born out of the request from both the community and the district to have student voice at the table when seeking solutions to the current crisis in African-American and Latino and Indigenous administration, teachers, staff and students in Denver Public Schools.


The DPS Student Board of Education, enhances the performance of our schools by promoting student voice and leadership, building powerful relationships among students and between students and adults, creating a positive environment, and fostering our school and district goals.

Challenge 5280

Throughout the school year, Student Board of Education leaders engage in implementing change through Challenge 5280, a student leadership competition. Students develop innovative policy arguments to make their school communities more equitable, and, in turn, to advocate for social justice.

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