Economic crisis generates social exclusion which is generally attributed to failure at school or to the inadequacy of educational provision. Studies are then carried out with regard to the economic impact of education which, in turn, centres educational debate more and more around the question of increased productivity. This paper puts forward proposals for the clarification of decision making and intervention process in education and their relation to the problem of development Thus, the concepts of education, citizenship and development will be examined along with their functions, links among them and their relation to social reproduction. In periods of unemployment new forms of development are sought; the employment crisis is linked to the search for growth. Educating for knowledge and for life means that citizenship should be thought not just in books but through the experience of participation Educational objectives in periods of growth and periods of crisis and the level of participation of individual citizens in current political and social arenas are looked into, and, finally, the question is raised as to whether we are witnessing the end or; on the contrary, a renaissance of citizenship and it values.