In the future, I see myself creating a school (eventually a school system) with a primary focus on creating an environment where all students feel emotionally, physically, psychologically, socially, and academically safe.
I want to create an environment where #neurodivergent students know they are supported and never shamed for processing, interacting, and learning differently…. A system that models a true zero tolerance bullying policy and has a hands on approach in regard to #restorativejustice. An environment where bullying is not tolerated in any form, on any level…. that means cruel narcissistic teachers, shame based classroom management, and the culture of excusing the behavior of a minority of acting out students that creates an emotionally and physically unsafe environment for the rest of the students will not be tolerated. A system where teachers feel appreciated and safe to bring their own flavor to their work, so they are excited about their jobs rather than burned out. A system that recognizes the need for empirical data, but is not structured around standardized testing. A place where assessment takes into account the whole child, their learning style, their natural interests and anxieties. A system that utilizes children’s strengths, passions, and interests to cultivate and maintain their love for learning. A system that encourages children to dream and support each others dreaming. I see a school that feels like a utopia for students, educators, admins, and parents. It’s so possible.
We spend so much time talking about problems that solutions are rarely created. We place bandages on deep festering wounds, and treat symptoms rather than get to the root and address it. I see differently and think differently for a reason. Tired of watching our kids suffer and struggle and want to leave this earth because they don’t feel safe in our schools. There are teachers that make them feel dumb. Admins do all they can to not provide the services and supports they need. I am tired of hearing the same problems from all over the nation. The children who are being bullied are receiving the same advice, “Tell a teacher,” and the children’s response is, “I did. They don’t do anything,” or “The teacher was right there. He didn’t say anything.” Parents who are advocating for the child to receive services to help them succeed in school are told, “Expect some pushback. They’re probably going to deny you the first time, but keep advocating for your child.”
I’m tired of everyone seeing the problem and doing nothing to change the system to support our children. Children are dropping out of school earlier and earlier. They are having anxiety attacks and are physically shutting down, school refusals are on the rise where a child would rather take any punishment, and even their own lives, than enter a school building. When are we going to do something?
I’m tired of sitting by wondering when someone is going to do something so I’m going to start writing the vision of what I want to see. I’m using all these stories I’ve heard and lived to create a plan for schools who are willing to shift. SEL is now a forced part of the learning experience in our schools, but teachers and admins need social emotional learning too. Sometimes they’re the worst ones in the building, and their behavior and indifference trickles down to the teachers, and that trickles down to the students. If teachers are roasting students in front of the class, why wouldn’t students do it? If admins give out minimal disciplinary actions to children who are creating a toxic environment, because “they’ve got stuff going on at home,” how is that supportive to the majority of children? What lesson does it teach? So all the other children have to struggle and feel unsafe while we excuse inappropriate behavior. How is that okay? Why is that the norm?
I could go on and on, but rather than complain about the problem, I’ll be adding to this vision, and creating what I believe it should look like. It’s gotten so out of hand. I want our children’s joy back. I believe I can be a part of the solution.
Co-Founder of SISTAMoms with Yvonne Monique Livingston LLC#healingourfamilies#talktomeandsee#socialanxiety#ADHD#education#dei#dontgiveup #Proud2BNaturalMe #socialemotionallearning #socialemotionaldevelopment #mentalhealth#mentalwealthYvonne Monique Livingston LLC The Art of Black Psychology
Appreciate this post? Please send Marlene a tip.
Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist is a single mom who lovingly shares her insights here for free. BuyMeACoffee offers readers a great way to support her work. You can securely send her a gift (a cup of matcha) as a thank you for this post. Simply tap the photo. Then, to the right of the screen, choose “Support” (to send her a one-time gift) or “Membership” (to give monthly). You can even add a thank you message! Blessings!