The youth-written stories in Represent give inspiration and information to teens in foster care while offering staff insight into those teens’ struggles.

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Teacher Lesson Return to "Black Students Deserve More Black Teachers"
Black Students Deserve More Black Teachers
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ELA & Social and Emotional Learning
Responsible Decision-Making


Story Summary: Asa tries to ignore a friend’s racist comments and behavior, but it snowballs and soon she must confront not only her “friend” but also the principal. Will asks a trusted principal about the lack of black teachers in his school and explains why this lack is problematic. Sydney is part of a club that makes fighting for an all-gender bathroom in their school a priority. All three writers find powerful ways to advocate for themselves and others.

How to Use These Stories
Assign students to read one or all of these stories and to complete one of the following activities to bolster communication and advocacy:
• Students write a speech about a topic or issue they feel passionately about. Volunteers can share with the class.
• Community advocacy scavenger hunt: Students research local advocacy groups and organizations. What is each organization’s mission? What events do they put together? How do they advocate for a group or cause?
• Students choose an issue or cause in their school they feel strongly about (for Will it was having more teachers of color in his school, for Asa it was fighting racism, and for Sydney it was getting a gender-neutral bathroom). In groups, have students create a poster or flyer designed to spread awareness about the issue and recruit others to join the cause.
• Students write a letter to the dean or principal about a topic or issue of concern. Use this as an opportunity for students to practice advocating for themselves and others, as well as communicating a need, writing formally, and including a call to action.
• Students create a piece of art (e.g., a drawing, painting, or sculpture) that represents a prevalent issue in their home or community. They then write a short description of their piece and what it symbolizes.



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(NYC-2019-11-03)