Mission and Core Beliefs
Educators for Social Responsibility (ESR) works directly with educators to implement systemic practices that create safe, caring, and equitable schools so that all young people succeed in school and life, and help shape a safe, democratic and just world.
1) Establish Educational Equity. Every student deserves access to an equitable array of high quality educational opportunities and supports. Schools should help to level the playing field of opportunity for young people in our society.
2) Insist on High Expectations. A staff culture that expects and insists that every student learn and achieve a high level of proficiency is vital to a school’s effectiveness.
3) Create a Positive School Climate and Culture. Young people learn best in safe, caring, respectful communities where caring and culturally competent adults know them well and students can develop positive relationships with adults and peers.
4) Educate the Whole Child. It is a school’s responsibility to educate the whole child, such that young people become academically successful, socially skillful, emotionally intelligent, ethically principled, and civically engaged.
5) Foster Efficacy and Social Responsibility. Preparing young people to face the challenges of living and working in the multicultural, interdependent, and technological world of the 21st century requires that they develop convictions and learn, practice, and demonstrate skills including:
• developing social consciousness and committing to the well-being of themselves, others, and the natural environment
• expressing empathy and demonstrating care for others
• communicating their feelings, needs, and thoughts effectively
• managing their behavior responsibly
• thinking critically and creatively
• solving problems collaboratively, and managing and resolving conflicts and differences nonviolently
• understanding, valuing, and appreciating diversity, and countering and confronting bias and prejudice
• taking meaningful action that arises from informed and ethical convictions and decision making
6) Create Change. Change begins when adults model the skills, behaviors, and qualities they seek to cultivate in young people. When the adults in school build a learning community, ground their work in the larger meaning and purposes of education, and receive professional development and support, they can change the culture and practices of their school.