ABSTRACT: One problem faced by teachers of citizenship is that ‘politics’ is negatively valued. The concept is actually ambiguous in value. The paper sets out a neutral, a negative, and a positive meaning of the term. It then goes on to explore the way that even on the positive construction there can seem to be ethical problems with politics. This explains both aspects of numerous projects to ‘depoliticise’ society and government, and to depoliticise citizenship education. But, the alternatives mean that we lose important political values.