Cities in Schools Program

In modern schools... Assessment happens through Meaningful Student Involvement. Learn more at SoundOut.org.A teacher with the Cities in Schools program in New York City engaged her students as evaluators in order to transform her practice.

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She wanted to provide students with the experience of being in charge while helping them to develop skills in written and oral communication and logic. Believing students must be treated- and must see themselves- as working evaluators, the teacher also believed staff members could get usable information about their programs from student evaluators. Throughout, she assured students their evaluations were real and would be used in the programs.

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  • Campell, P., Edgar, S. and Halsted, A.L. (October 1994) “Students as Evaluators: A Model for Program Evaluation,” Phi Delta Kappan, 76, 2.
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Community Toolbox

This was the Dodge Street School in Omaha, Nebraska from circa 1872 to circa 1920.

Before anyone tries to improve schools, transform education or just make their school better through Meaningful Student Involvement, they should look over the tools for communities. This includes nonprofits, parents, student-led education organizing groups, and others.


Tools for Communities


Examples


Challenges


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Student Voice Revolution: The Meaningful Student Involvement Handbook written by Adam Fletcher published by CommonAction Publishing in 2017.

Student Voice in Afterschool Programs

Meaningful Student Involvement naturally fits into the experience of students in afterschool programs.

Where Meaningful Student Involvement Fits

Whether seeking to build student ownership, foster engagement or empower student agency, afterschool workers can rely on student/adult partnerships to enrich, enliven and transform their programs.

  • Planning—Students can be essential partners in planning entire programs, specific activities and many other elements of afterschool programs.
  • Recruitment—Authentic investment in programming allows students to represent themselves and the activities they’re engaged in afterschool.
  • Delivery—Facilitating, teaching and leading afterschool activities can be shared through student/adult partnerships, mentoring and student-led activities.
  • Assessment—Afterschool programs must increasingly work to maintain the integrity and effectiveness of their activities. Student-driven assessment and evaluations can do that.
  • Re-invention—Using the assessment and planning activities mentioned earlier, students can re-invent the approaches, delivery and outcomes of afterschool programs.

There is a process for enacting all of these different elements that should happen before taking action.

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Raising Student Voice and Participation

Raising Student Voice & Participation, or RSVP, is a program of the National Association of Student Councils, or NASC, based in Virginia and working nationally.

RSVP aims to identify student council as the primary vehicle for student voice and meaningful involvement. It is through student council-led initiatives that students are able to identify needs and address concerns in effective and productive ways, founded in educational values and supported by the principal and faculty.

Student leaders, advisers, principals, or other participating school members of RSVP are expected to integrate RSVP into their student council agendas—training other student leaders to plan and facilitate summits and involving others in the development and implementation of activities based on summit results.

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Student Voice Project

The Student Voice Project was launched in Washington State in July 2010 in Washington State by high school students.

The Student Voice Project became a non-connected Political Action Committee (PAC) that aimed to give students a voice in today’s political realm.

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