In order to ensure that young people are motivated and prepared to address institutional challenges in their communities after high school, students need regular practice solving real problems in their learning communities during high school.
A year after naming ourselves the Student Voice Collaborative, we had to ask ourselves: What does "student voice" really mean anyway?
And so, SVC members took a step back and spent an entire school year conducting in-depth research in pursuit of answers to this important question. The process included 5 phases -- each dedicated to collecting experiences and ideas from a different perspective: SVC members (journal entries), classmates (interviews), teachers (surveys), researchers (literature and interviews), and Quality Review Student Shadows (school visit observations). In the end, we used the data we gathered to create our very own Student Voice Rubric.
SVC's Student Voice Rubric is a product of consolidating a range of shared values into a set of essential big ideas. It outlines 6 areas (places where student voice can and should be found) and 17 elements (components that can and should all be found in each area) with descriptive indicators for each element to help observers recognize them. The rubric is intended to serve as an educational resource for students, teachers, principals, and school reviewers -- introducing a common and practical understanding of student voice -- as well as an instrument to support collaborative school assessment and improvement.
Some Campaign Summaries
Below are some examples of collaborative school improvement campaigns that SVC schools have conducted over the years: