proponent of student efficacy – Global Homework Experts

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Ms. Green was a proponent of student efficacy. Many students at Halloway School who felt alienated or disconnected gravitated toward Ms. Green and her classroom. It was little surprise, then, when Lorraine and Jeff, the only two “out” lesbian, gay, bisexual, or queer (LGBQ) students at the school, asked Ms. Green if she would serve as faculty sponsor for a Gay-Straight Alliance or “GSA,” a student organization for LGBQ students and their allies. They wanted to create a student group that could be a “safe space” for LGBQ students, and shared that Terrence and Hu, two classmates who identified as heterosexual but were allies, wanted to help start the GSA also. “We’ve already started talking about how to help educate our peers about homophobia,” Lorraine explained. “We’ve even researched GSAs at other schools.” “Sounds like you’ve done your homework,” Ms. Green replied. “It’s a nationwide movement,” Lorraine added. “Then I’ll be your sponsor,” Ms. Green said. Nothing excited her more than students initiating these sorts of efforts. Usually students who came to her with requests did so in search of permission or with the assumption that Ms. Green would lead the charge. Lorraine and Jeff were taking the lead, not seeking permission. Of course, Ms. Green knew that Lorraine, Jeff, Terrence, and Hu were heading down a difficult road; that their efforts might be met with ridicule from some peers and calls to the school from angry parents. But she agreed to support them any way she could.

A few days later Ms. Livingsworth, Halloway’s principal, visited Ms. Green’s classroom. At first she sounded supportive of the students’ efforts. “I think it’s great when young people take initiative,” she said. “They’re braver than I was at their age.” “I do have a concern about this particular group, though,” Ms. Livingsworth continued. “We talk about being inclusive. My fear is, by allowing a Gay-Straight Alliance, we might be alienating conservative families whose religious views don’t approve of homosexuality.” “Those families feel welcome here in other ways,” Ms. Green insisted. “The students are just trying to create space for themselves as people who care about ending discrimination.” Ms. Livingsworth nodded. “I commend them for that. But it’s not the right time for a GSA. Let’s suggest they start a Diversity Club instead. That way all students will feel included.” Ms. Green knew this would devastate Lorraine and Jeff. She felt horribly disappointed, too, but knew Principal Livingsworth had made a final decision. Eventually she would need to raise this issue again, but for now she needed to focus on breaking the news to the students.

Questions

1 Was Ms. Livingsworth’s suggestion that Lorraine and her peers start a Diversity Club rather than a GSA an equitable one? Why or why not? How is a Diversity Club different in nature from a GSA?

2 If you were in Ms. Green’s shoes, would you have argued more vigorously in support of the GSA? If so, how?

3 What ways can Ms. Green support the students’ efforts to create a safer community for themselves, while also complying with Ms. Livingsworth’s requ