The Council ProgramRevere proudly announces that the highly acclaimed Ojai Foundation Council Program will be back again for the fourth year. If you haven't yet heard about Council, we'd like to give you a little bit of information about the Program. Council is a communication tool, deep listening practice, and a fun way for students to share their stories with their classmates. We have spent the last two years incorporating the use of Council in classroom, Staff meetings, Parent gatherings, the Counseling Department, and in a variety of other meaningful and interactive ways. Council is not Counseling. Council provides students the opportunity to sit together in a circle to celebrate important events, make significant decisions, explore conflict resolution, find answers to questions, and generally connect with one another-and this is at the heart of Council. It is also important to note that Council can easily be tied into the curriculum for any class.
Revere will be training a new group of teachers this year to continue the commitment we have made to honor and respect all voices on campus. We welcome parents to participate in our Parent Councils which will be announced soon. Please check "The Rider" for further updates. Ruben Valerio, Site Coordinator for RevereNatalie White, Site Consultant for LAUSD's "Council Practitioners Center"
Some students face daily challenges of multi-generational poverty, the surrounding influences of gangs, the easy availability of drugs and other influences that can lead to unhealthy life choices.
Our Council in Schools Program addresses such influences by following elementary, middle and high school students throughout their school years, introducing them to the practice of council as a way that helps to build self-esteem; to deepen their communication with each other, parents and teachers; and to clarify their personal values and develop cultural tolerance. Conflict exploration and prevention sessions are an integral part of the program, and teachers are trained and encouraged to utilize council throughout the school week during class discussions and to work through difficulties in the classroom, as well as in responding to challenging school community situations as they arise. Such realized accomplishments, along with guidance and wisdom from supportive adults, can be the turning point in a high-risk students' life.
What Council Can Bring to a SchoolStudents develop facility with what it is to "be in Council": to develop attention, concentration, and listening skills; to express themselves fully and appropriately; to "suspend" preconceptions; and to apprehend the "larger picture" that shapes their lives.
Council provides teachers with a powerful classroom tool for behavior norming, motivation, curriculum delivery, and processing and assessment of learned information.Council offers the school an "open feedback system" for processing changes, crises, conflicts, and for celebrating achievements. Council offers the Staff (administration, teachers, others) a process that supports the "human" activity of being educators. Council provides all the stakeholders in the school community a way for their voices to be heard. Besides the weekly student councils, a school program can include parent councils, staff/parent councils, parent/student councils and whole community councils).The program can be delivered:
- By individual teachers
- By a whole department (Language Arts/Social Studies, other)
- By the whole staff on a particular day (with administrators & counselors co-facilitating, like SSR programs)
- In an "advisory" program
- Through a "human development" department