Strength in Voices
- June 8, 2016
Washoe County School District
In early June 2016, Washoe County School District hosted its second Strength in Voices event in Reno, Nevada. The event, co-sponsored by REL West, was attended by approximately 200 people. Nearly two-thirds of the attendees were middle and high school students from the district, and the remainder were teachers and district and school leaders.
The goal of the summit was to bring together students and adults to surface areas for improvement and ways to collaborate on addressing them. The event supports the district's "90 by 20" initiative of graduating 90 percent of students by 2020. Student voice is a centerpiece of this school improvement initiative. Students played key roles in the conference, leading or co-leading sessions on bullying, the impact of stereotypes, the importance of student voice in school improvement efforts, transitioning from middle to high school, creating a culturally competent school, and using technology to amplify student voice.
Along with sessions, there were student presentations on personal stories of struggles to stay in school, student musical and spoken-word performances, and a superintendent-student beat-box rap duo about the 90 by 20 initiative. The day concluded with a brainstorming session in which students could provide feedback to their schools' leaders about what they would like to see improved at their schools.
To learn more about this event and read a detailed summary, visit the Washoe County School District Strength in Voices webpage.