Every child enrolled in educational institutions (schools, colleges, universities) has the right to student advocacy, and they deserve someone to stand up for them when they need it. Students also need someone, preferably an adult, who never gives up on them and believes they can achieve everything they want. As a teacher, educator, or a tutor, you can become that person; and if you are here, we are sure you want to learn more about student advocacy.
What Is Student Advocacy?
Student advocacy or advocacy for students
refers to identifying the educational needs of students, and their troubles, and providing them with a pleasant and positive experience. Educational institutions hire professionals and educators, particularly for student advocacy. However, a parent, teacher, or tutor can also become a student advocate.
Student advocates pay close attention to all the academic issues and make sure their students are working according to the educational policies of state and federal laws. Student advocates have to provide their students with maximum support and take a stand for their rights. Moreover, student advocates are usually very popular among community members.
So, are you a student advocate or want to be one, and looking for ways to perform student advocacy in the best way possible? Don't worry; MTS has got you covered. At MTS, we have a team of professional tutors to help and facilitate students in every way possible.
Keep Reading to see our tips on how to become the best student advocate and stand up for your students to provide them with maximum support, excellent education, and success.
Top Tips To Be The Perfect Student Advocate
So, are you curious to know what makes a good student advocate? Below, we are sharing some special traits and qualities teachers, parents, and educators should possess to become the best student advocates. Read on!
Listen To Your Students
If you want to understand your students and know what they are going through, it is essential to listen; to their concerns, thoughts, or whatever they have to tell. There are countless listening strategies used by good advocates to effectively listen, understand what their students are saying, and engage them to talk. These strategies can be maintaining eye contact, asking clear and thoughtful questions, and giving non-verbal feedback. These listening strategies encourage the students to talk more.
Listening to your students will let you know about their needs, goals, lives, and interests. All this information will further help you in advocating for the students in the future. Trust me; youth today only wants someone to listen to them.
Focus On Students
Just like listening, it is also important to focus on your students, their thoughts, and their points of view. A good student advocate always sees things from the student's perspective, cares about their feelings, and always stands up for their rights. Moreover, student advocates are committed to helping the students, make decisions that are best for their lives, and help the student to become a self advocate in the future.
Understand Student Rights
A student advocate should be familiar with all the student rights, and all the laws and policies associated with them. For example, they should learn about rights and laws like IEPs and 504 plans, what kind of student speech is protected by the First Amendment, and harassment or anti-bullying policies of schools. Having in-depth knowledge of all these rules is what helps you advocate for students and their rights in the future. If the advocate feels like the student is not getting any of the rights properly, they can stand up and fights for those rights.
Create An Ideal Environment For Students
A student advocate should create an ideal, engaging, and learning environment for the students. The environment should be able to encourage the students to focus on their interests, passions, and strengths. For this, again, you will have to have in-depth knowledge about student rights. Also, you will have to take active participation in school inclusive activities to ensure the environment is suitable and ideal for the students to be comfortable. an ideal environment is the most important thing for the growth and development of students.
If you want to become an effective student advocate, you will need to strengthen your relationship with your colleagues in school and other higher authorities. Trust me; you won't be able to advocate for the students all by yourself. You will need support from others to meet your goals and help the students. You will need to build up friendly relationships with the principal, parents, community members, teachers, and other special education team members. For example, if you want to advocate for the mental health condition of a student, you will need to have a strong bond with the school counselor or psychologist.
Being a student advocate is a position that comes with loads of responsibility and dedication toward your students. So, if becoming a student advocate is your passion, you also need to stay dedicated, patient, and hard-working to fulfill your dream. I hope that our top 5 tips to become an effective student advocate will help you achieve your goal. We hope you enjoyed reading it and become the best student advocate in the future! Keep visiting our blog for more tips and tricks on various topics!
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