Advocating for Students
Students form the most important and crucial part of a country's population because they are believed to be the upcoming leaders. Teachers have a duty and responsibility to educate the students and make them learn important issues in the world. In the process of learning in schools, students face various issues and circumstances in terms of policies and programs that massively affect them. This brings up the need for teachers to advocate for the students and voice their concerns and issues affecting them. It is important for teachers to advocate for students because failure to do so will result in implementation of questionable policies by stakeholders in the education system. Therefore, teachers play a vital role in advocating for students because they ensure that the policies are equitable, and serve to help and support the learning process of students (Alexandria, 2005).
The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) refers to teacher as educator advocates. Educator advocates have got to raise their voice and put adequate efforts to ensure that they go beyond the classroom and into the local setting, with the goal of attaining a national recognition. That being the case, educator advocates have to demonstrate clear path ways that illustrate how they advocate for the students. Generally educator advocates have to take actions or act accordingly to advocate for the students. For instance they could contact policy makers and communicate to other important allies that make policies to give their inputs on the formulation of the best policies (Alexandria, 2005). Educator advocates have to also make plans so as to be able to identify the specific goals that they intend to achieve. Additionally educator advocates show that they advocate for students by identifying functional support units (parents, clubs, businesses, town hall, city leaders) that will make the most important positive impact on the students in the learning process.
Having mentioned that students form an important population it is evident that there are other groups who value them. Firstly students live in a community and the mentors or leaders have to be involved in their learning process. It is important for the students’ families to be also involved in their education. Educator advocates should encourage, engage, and include student families in advocating for them. Families can advocate for students by coming to meetings, discussing problems, sharing opinions, expressing their views, and keeping in touch with what the school is currently doing. Also, educator advocates can ask for resources or support from the student families when pursuing a particular cause and in such ways the families would be involved (Alexandria, 2005).
Students have to succeed and therefore it is important to create conducive environments in schools to support them. Because of this, changes have to be made in the education system to help the students’ succeed. Schools have to change and move away from the biased beliefs and instead respect and appreciate all cultures and languages as opposed to discriminating against students. Changes have to be made in the education system to ensure students succeed by laying emphasis on educator quality and professionalism (National Education Association, 2015). Quality teachers have to be hired and retained by schools to ensure that a great sense of professionalism is built in the schools. Doing all of this will help us become better advocates for our students.
Alexandria, V. A. (2005). Association for Supervision and Curriculum development. Marzano, RJ, Waters, T., & McNulty, BA.
National Education Association. (2015).The Road to Student Success: A Toolkit for Student-Centered Advocacy. National Education Association