Some days I get up rather discouraged — there’s just so much violence, denial, rote restriction, and ill will around us, particularly around education. And then I read something that inspires me and reminds me that intelligence, respect for kids, and effective democracy just keep springing up in schools. So please read high school tech teacher Jennifer Barnett’s piece in “Education Week – Teacher” Jan. 8th. She describes how Childersburg HS, in rural Alabama, re-developed its atmosphere by organizing a student leadership team to do the planning and implementation –it’s so inspiring to see kids remake their school culture. As a result, she declares,
Students at our school demonstrate their ownership of their learning community each and every day. I pinch myself often, just to make certain that I’m not dreaming.
It especially pleases us to learn that community members and administrators from other schools visit all the time, with kids guiding the tours. So the school is keeping the community well informed of this achievement. Now the story is on the “Teacher” website. But I want to see it go national. This is the kind of story that can renew people’s faith in public education.