Now that we’ve been home from the conference for a few days and have gotten some sleep, I can start to unpack what all I took away from this experience.
I can’t begin to convey the depth and breadth of honest and earnest commitment to youth we experienced over the week. The dedication to social justice, equity in educational processes and the opportunity for all kids to find their individual route to being a self-actualized learner.
None of this happens without taking a long, hard look at what our current beliefs and biases are around equitable and humane attitudes and actions towards kids, families and other teachers. We at RTG are a fairly self-critical bunch anyway …we never met a new idea we didn’t want to get to know better and lively discussion at staff meetings is part of the culture of the school. I, for one, am confident that this challenge will be a welcome one for the folks I work with. But a challenge none the less.
This year, we’ll be making another commitment to question ourselves and invite families to join us in checking our assumptions about what should happen and then involve the kids, involve the kids and involve the kids some more, in the process of creating a rich and organic learning space that will be a respectful place for each and every person who passes through our school.