Everyday Democracy Working To Achieve Greater Level of Equity for Students and Families throughout New England

Shruti Vishnubhatla
April 4, 2018

“Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.” – Kofi Annan


Working to increase equity for students and families throughout New England, coaches from Everyday Democracy and Great Schools Partnership are busy planning a unique conference for later this month -- a Learning Exchange or LEX--  in Portland ME, which will focus on utilizing Everyday Democracy’s process and principles to improve student outcomes through community engagement. 


The previous LEX in Hartford, CT, in January, brought 25 coaches and staff together to hone their skills and share lessons learned to solve dilemmas in developing and maintaining authentic community engagement. The coaches highlighted the need to build a system for sustainability rather than hiring a person. They also talked about ways to expand the cadre of facilitators and build local expertise through training, modelling and collaborative work.


This exercise was part of the “Building Public Understanding and Demand Initiative” funded by the Nellie Mae Education Foundation, an organization constantly working toward reshaping public education to better prepare students and ensure a brighter future for all. The initiative works to promote awareness of student-centered approaches that lead to deeper learning for all students and encourages public demand for this type of learning in communities and school districts in New England.


Through the Nellie Mae initiative, Everyday Democracy and the Great Schools Partnership are engaged with 20 school districts in the states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.


The Learning Exchange emphasized the necessity for student-centered and personalized learning and fostered the understanding of the ways in which education benefits from civic and community mindedness, and how community-school engagement benefits everyone.


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