I was in San Francisco this week to speak on a panel at the Annual AP Conference about the importance of teacher advocacy and the role technology can play in it. It was an exciting opportunity to speak to teachers interested in advocacy.
When I started blogging in January of 2010, I never thought I was an advocate. I was just some guy writing about school stuff. I started to focus on technology and commented on current Ed issues, but I never claimed to be an advocate.
After talking with some of the teachers on the panel and people in the audience, I realized we are all advocates. We all have a voice to change our education system.
Technology has allowed educators to connect and share. Being an advocate does not have to be a scary thing. Here are a couple of things you can do to speak up and let your voice be heard.
1) Start a blog
Blogging was a way for me to share my thoughts with the world. I had no idea who was going to be reading, but I knew it was a place to call my own. A place where my opinion will have a place.
A blog can resonate around the world. It allows people to connect with issues from anywhere in the world. If you are interested in speaking up, think of starting your own blog and sharing your voice. Pass it on to others who share your ideas and pass it on to the powers that be (local, state or federal types) to show them you have a voice.
2) Join Twitter
What are you waiting for. Twitter has been instrumental in overthrowing dictatorships around the world. It's connected people with common ideas so their voices would resonate to their government. "We will not stand for this anymore" was shouted to their leaders and change was made.
Twitter allows a person to have a voice. A voice that can he heard by sending your ideas directly to the people who need to listen. Twitter is about making connections with people that share common interests. There are millions of educators out there. Imagine if all of them joined Twitter and sent tweets to President Obama or Secretary Duncan. Twitter, like blogging, allows a person to have a voice.
These are a couple of quick ways to start advocating for education. As the world of education gets cluttered with millionaires telling the country what education should look like, it's important for educators to speak up. Today, more than ever, we need educators to speak up so we can finally be heard.
Picture from Flickr Creative Commons