THE CHALLENGE: How might we redesign the educational system to help young adults navigate the changing world?
THE SOLUTION: A “For Students by Students” Bill of Rights
PASSED UNANIMOUSLY. A huge congratulations to our NextGen students Valeria Gonzalez, Victoria Salcedo, and HATCHer / educator Kip Morales for the hard work and dedication to manifesting change in their community. In almost every other industry, products are designed with consumer insights and voices. But for centuries, youth have not had a seat at the table in co-creating an educational system intended for them.
On Tue, June 23rd, the Los Angeles Unified School District (the second-largest school district in the nation), unanimously passed the Student Bill of Rights – a concept originally brought to life at HATCH Montana last Fall by a Lab Sprint group. Our NextGen cohort this past year included 15 students from JSA & Alliance school district in Los Angeles. Alliance Public Schools is one of the largest and most successful public charter school networks in the country.
The HATCH Impact Design Lab Sprints are designed to leverage rapid ideation and creative problem-solving methodologies. There are 10-12 Lab Sprints at every HATCH Summit at Mountain Sky Ranch in Paradise Valley, Montana (see HATCH Montana highlights 2019). This particular Lab team included two educators and 3 Alliance high school students and produced the design for making education more equitable “from the ground up” co-authored with student voices, through the vehicle of a Student Bill of Rights. A for students by students document designed to elevate education and empower students to advocate for safe, inspiring, and equitable learning environments.
The Lab Sprint team included: HATCH Next Gens Victoria Salcedo, Kamia Douglas, Joshua Alexander and Nathan Brown; and Gens: Kip Morales (Los Angeles educator), Jeremy Harder (Montana, Big Sky educator), Mathew Riggan (Philadelphia educator), Rachel Kaganoff Stern (JSA CEO, HATCH Board of Directors), Melanie Curtis (activst/skydiver), Andrew Truong (Product lead, Facebook), and Megan Boettcher (Bozeman, Montana educator).
On return to Los Angeles, their JSA chapter took on the design. Junior State of America (JSA) was created by and for young people interested in what happens around them – from politics, to how government works, and contributing to their community. Since its founding in 1934, JSA has served as a place where students build leadership skills, learn civil debate, and strengthen their engagement through volunteering and activism.
The group began to poll students for their main concerns in their educational experiences from K-current years. Next, they created a draft of a Student Bill of Rights that addressed their concerns and were echoed in the California Education Code book. They consulted a government specialist, Jose Ugate. He advised that the students focus locally (LAUSD) rather than for all of California to build a case for later State adoption.
So, they did. The students met with LAUSD Board Member, who loved the idea and promised to author the resolution. Next, the JSA members, led by now graduate and Alliance scholarship recipient Valeria Gonzalez, presented their Bill to the LAUSD Superintendent Student Advisory Council, which led to entering into a partnership.
From there, the Collins JSA students collaborated back and forth–a collaboration of charter and traditional–until a Student Bill of Rights was refined. One of the student organizers–NextGen HATCHer & JSA chapter president, Valeria Gonzalez, delivered a moving speech to 900+ SoCAL JSA members last week at their Fall State Conference in Anaheim, CA. Please watch her speech here: Valeria Speech.
Click to read more about HATCH a Better World Lab projects.
HATCH, Kip Morales, Valeria Gonzalez, and a team will be working to expand the impact for the Student Bill of Rights to statewide and national legislation, in the HATCH IMPACT Labs, a six week accelerator that launched Thurs, June 25th. With 170 participants (60 of which are NextGen), from 12 countries, and 34 states across the U.S. 24 Impact Design Sprints are underway.
THE HATCH LAB TEAM:
Valeria Gonzalez, JSA Chapter President
Victoria Salcedo, JSA Chapter VP
Frances Suavillo, LAUSD Student School Board Member
Nick Melvoin, LAUSD Board Member, District 4
LAUSD Superintendent Student Advisory Council
Dr. Brenda Manuel, LAUSD Administrator, Student Empowerment Unit
Kip Morales, JSA/Teach Plus/Collins High School, Los Angeles
Jeremy Harder, HATCHer, Big Sky School District Teacher, Montana
Jose Ugarte, Government and Labor Relations, Ugarte & Associates
Kambiz “Kamy” Akhavan, USC Executive Director, Center for the Political Future
Rachel Kaganoff Stern, JSA, Interim CEO, HATCH Board of Directors
Sarah Lillis, Executive Director of Teach Plus California
Andrew Truong, HATCHer, Product Marketing Lead, Facebook