What do you perceive your responsibility as an educator to be to standing up against exclusion, prejudice, and injustice?
I believe that as an educator it is one of my responsibilities to stand up against exclusion, prejudice, and injustice and to bring forth this knowledge to my students. My perception of this that empower my students to stand up for their own rights and for the rights of others. In today’s world we are enduring an issue of social inequality and it is imperative that our students’ understanding is strengthen through means of recognizing the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms as well as promoting understanding, tolerance and friendship among all various groups (Struthers, pg. 134). I agree with Struthers in the fact that some teachers may feel hesitant in introducing and discussing this controversial topic. However, it is possible and will benefit and pave a way for young learners to be capable in engaging tough situations and issues. As educator, I need to strip away the notion from other educators that this topic leads to shades of grey and is not appropriate for our students. Exclusion prejudice and injustice is certainly a heavy topic to discuss, however making educators feel self-assured in being able to educate others in this area is just as important as ensuring that others view human rights as a mainstream subject for formal education (Struthers, pg. 145).
In addition, I believe that as an educator I need to provide students with an open space of opportunities where they can share their lived experiences of social injustice. This supports them in giving validation as well as connecting students’ experiences to the social issues of power and privilege and access to equitable schooling. Overall, my goal is to help them navigate in ways individuals can commit to social justice advocacy (Storms, pg. 37).
Storms, S. B. (2013). Preparing Teachers for Social Justice Advocacy. Multicultural Education, 20(2), 33-39.
Struthers, A. E. (2016). Human Rights: A Topic Too Controversial for Mainstream Education? Human Rights Law Review,16(1), 131-162. doi:10.1093/hrlr/ngv040