With young people finding new social media and platforms to express their voice, student activism has surged in the last decade. Change, however, does not always come from complaints, protests and petitions but, instead, from positive actions inspired by a collective spirit of influence and innovation. Therefore, activism in schools should be seen as a quality improvement tool in developing student voice and an understanding of the wider world.
We have put together a quick guide on activism and included a few examples of how school communities can bring about change while committing to social responsibility.
Students at The International School of Moscow have embraced opportunities for judicious activism by identifying the issues they feel are most important to them. Whether it be a change they think should be brought about within the school, such as a new lunch menu, or a campaign that calls out a broader injustice, or out in the world.
Getting the advocacy right
Lobbying, the process of organising initiatives that seek to change laws or rules, often by talking to or influencing decision-makers such as government officials or school leaders, can lead to positive outcomes for change. During the Nord Anglia European Conference in March of this year, students demonstrated their skills in advocacy by presenting proposed pledges to senior leaders that commit to reaching many of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.