Education Conference shows common struggles
Purely by chance I learned about an opportunity to exhibit at a conference for educators and educational support professionals. The conference theme, “Promising practices—proven strategies,” invited attendees to explore many different ways to support student learning both in and outside of the school setting.
I’m so glad that we were able to exhibit at this conference. The SAAM resources on healthy adolescent sexuality were going like hotcakes and we had so many great conversations with attendees about the struggles they’re facing and the great work they’re doing with young people.
On the first day, I took some time out to wander around the exhibit tables and introduce myself to the other exhibitors. It’s so validating as a new parent to know that the folks educating our young people are so invested in caring for and educating the whole person. From strategies for nutrition and exercise to resources on homelessness to reading enrichment, there was a taste of everything at this conference.
What struck me the most about the exhibit hall and our conversations with attendees was how closely aligned our efforts and our visions are at the core. Ultimately, we want to see a world where young people are happy, healthy and safe to explore their lives and learn to the fullest extent possible.
We’re working on similar issues and have similar challenges. Activists and educators understand that homelessness is a distinct risk factor for young people. We know that oppression and discrimination that migrant families and families that speak English as a second language must be expunged. We all agree that students and parents need accurate information about sex and sexuality if they are going to have safe, enriching sex lives.
Every person I chatted with agreed that our fields have so much in common that we simply must do a better job of working together. If learning opportunities like this conference pop up in your area, make the time to go, make the time to explore, and make the time to make connections that will benefit your shared work and visions for violence free futures.