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|Defining Social Justice|
One of the important themes in the MAECEL program is social justice. If you do an internet search, you will find many definitions for social justice. However, within each definition it should be clear that each has one thing in common; equity. Have you ever thought about what the word equity means, specifically as it relates to children? What about equity in education? As you will read this week, the achievement gap that exists in education today has a direct and important relationship to social justice. As leaders in the field of early childhood education, you are charged with the care and education of this nationâ€™s children, and as such, social justice should be at the forefront of your learning. The aim of your educational journey throughout this program is not to simply help you be touched by the importance of social justice, but rather to be moved by it. Taylor (n.d.) states that to be touched by social justice is simply to be a â€œsympathetic observerâ€, but to be truly moved by social justice is â€œsomething entirely differentâ€ (para. 14). Determining that difference and your role in the transformation of education is the aim of this discussion this week.
To prepare for this discussion, read the article Strategies for Closing the Achievement Gaps (Links to an external site.).
After reading the article, reflect on the following:
According to Adams (2000), â€œBeing moved requires taking a critical, systemic, and action oriented approach that not only interrogates social hierarchies but shows “how we might take action in our own lives and in coalition with others to effect positive social change” (as cited in Taylor, n.d., para. 14).
For your initial post:
- Explain in your own words what equity in education means to you.
- Identify the â€œcritical, systematic and action orientedâ€ strategies you can use in your own classroom, school or center that would take you from being simply â€œtouchedâ€ by social justice to being â€œmovedâ€ by social justice. Support this portion of your discussion with your course text and at least one scholarly resource (Links to an external site.).
- Defend how your strategies will help to close the achievement gap that â€œhas profound consequences for our nationâ€™s future and its ability to compete in a global, highly technological societyâ€ (Bredekamp, 2017, p. 25). Support this portion of your post with your text and at least one additional scholarly resource (Links to an external site.) (it can be the same resource as used previously).
- Compose a social justice mission statement. Your mission statement can be your personal mission statement (for your classroom), or a mission statement for a center or school. Your mission statement should be a minimum of five sentences in length and should touch on each of the following points: equity, achievement, diversity, advocacy, and action.