Re-visioning Schools as Educational Communities for Positive Youth Development
Schools have historically been sites of divisioning; dualistically positioned. Schools for the most part, exist in isolation from the communities they serve. Fences are a symbolic representation of this separation. The wearing of uniforms symbolises the separation of teachers from students. The term ‘student’ symbolises the divisioning of the young person as a whole being from the young person solely as a learner. Schools historically have divisioned power. Teachers make decisions and students follow. Teachers are authority figures in positions of power over students. Youth development as a paradigm challenges historical dualism in schools. Youth development promotes connectivity between family, schools, communities and young people. Youth development recognises the whole person and is strengths based in orientation. Youth development promotes youth participation and shared decision making and agency.