Boston’s Social Justice Academy

Today I met with several staff at the Social Justice Academy (SJA) in Boston. For the last three years Youth On Board has been working with students and adults here to foster student voice in the process of creating small schools. They have had fascinating experiences, and I am collecting them excitedly for a new publication we’re creating focused on developing cultures within schools that sustain meaningful student involvement.

SJA is doing powerful work. Through 16 student-created committees, students are involved in a variety of functions throughout the school, covering everything from school decor to student/adult relationships. In reflecting with a few school leaders, we identified some places where the school could grow, particularly along the lines of infusing student voice into classroom teaching. Anyway it was measured though, this opportunity served as a powerful introduction to the force of student voice in Boston Public Schools.

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