Voice and Choice: Comments on sessions with students

April 27, 2014

On Friday we had a session with the group who did a pitch around the general concept of engagement.  As part of the day we invited students from two of the pitch ideas to attend and take part.  This was done as a philosophical choice about making sure that student voice was included in the discussion.  We did not give it much more thought than that.

However, as we began to discuss the topic of engagement it quickly became very clear that the student voice was critical and was shaping the day in ways we had not imagined.

Our board improvement plan says that we are working on student achievement through voice and engagement.  I have seldom seen it in action any more clearly than on Friday – at least at the system level.  We have realized several times this year that we needed to simply ask the students or just ask the teachers when we were trying to figure out the next best step in a variety of projects.  Here was another example of the importance of remembering the power of asking, giving authentic voice and listening to it.

Thank you to all who were in the group on Friday.  It was eye-opening and soul enriching.

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