After mapping interventions onto their models of educational equity, Changing Systems participants presented their recommendations for change to community stakeholders on the final day of the summit. The presentation was followed by a lively and interactive group discussion using the World Cafe method. High school participants hosted dialogues on education at small tables, and attendees rotated tables every few minutes. The high school students brainstormed and prioritized the following recommendations:

Student Involvement in Decision-Making

  • Include students in hiring process of teachers
  • Questionnaires to match students with teachers that best suit them
  • Create an outlet where students can address their concerns about their teachers in an effective way

School Environment and Relationships 

  • Regular icebreaker activities with different classes to build relationships across school
  • Motivational speeches from peers
  • Fairs and events to celebrate diversity of school and challenge racism 

Access to Mental Health Support

  • Counselors check-in with students to build relationships, without students having to search out for their counselors
  • Increase number of social workers and counselors
  • Improve home stability to meet basic needs
  • Speakers on topics of mental health

Quality of Curriculum

  • Train teachers to have more engaging curriculum
  • Restrict workload (homework) to manage impact of stress
  • Mindfulness breaks between lessons to wake up and release stress
  • Stakeholders go into schools to tell kids about programs and opportunities

 

“Educational equity is more than just about money and resources, but also about countless other factors such as teacher quality and accessibility among different individuals…There’s many factors to it but we can start with little solutions to make a big difference.” – SSDL Fellow

“The system is bigger than us. We can develop action ideas but the challenge is having stakeholders understanding the student perspective and taking it seriously.” – Summit Participant 

“Educational equity is like a system that will be hard to change, but we got our voice out and confronted the problem. The solution starts with us.” -SSDL Fellow