The member states of the OAS all recognize that education is key to strengthening democratic institutions and have committed to promoting a culture of democracy through formal and non-formal education. The Inter-American Democratic Charter, adopted by the 34 member states on September 2001, emphasizes the importance of promoting democratic values to establish a democratic culture and specifies that "Special attention shall be given to the development of programs and activities for the education of children and youth as a means of ensuring the continuance of democratic values, including liberty and social justice" (Art. 27).
In August 2005, Ministers of Education adopted the Inter-American Program on Education for Democratic Values and Practices and requested that the Inter-American Committee on Education (CIE) with the support of the Office of Education and Culture (OEC) of the OAS launch the Program by supporting initiatives of three types: Research, Professional Development and Educational Resources, and Information Exchange.
Since 2006, the Office of Education and Culture, in collaboration with Advisory Board Members, Permanent Missions of the OAS, and other key partners of the Program from Ministries, Civil Society Organization and Universities has supported the development and execution of Program's initiatives. The Web Portal of the Inter-American Program contains more detailed information about its background, allies, activities and achievements.