Schools

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Maddy Pollack speaking at her Bat Mitzvah party, microphone in hand. Cake on a table in front of her with text "Mazel Tov, Maddy."

The Only Jewish Kid

by Maddy Pollack

When I was in third grade, my teacher asked me to tell my class about the Jewish New Year. I was not only the only Jewish kid in my class, I was also the only Jewish kid (aside from my brother) in the whole school.

Desk with computer, coffee, notebook, and phone on top

Find Your Voice, Then Share It

by Shira Minsk

Forming strong opinions is easier said than done, and for me, the exercise of writing helps me get there.

Sneaker with butterflies on it

Butterflies and What They Mean to Me

by Lila Zinner

I love butterflies because, to me, butterflies represent freedom and bliss.

Sign with #MeToo written on it

Someone You May Know

by Hannah Downing

I never, ever imagined that I would be sexually harassed. I thought that my environment was safe, and that I was doing everything I could to keep myself safe.

Topics: Feminism, Schools
Banner that reads, "men of quality respect women's equality

Why Feminism Needs Teenage Boys

by Emma Nathanson

The boys in my class created a self-fulfilling prophecy. Their worry over claiming a title because of their lack of action made it impossible for them to take action in the first place.

Topics: Feminism, Schools
Rosie the Riveter

Finding My Femininity

by Ilana Jacobs

I was weird for being strong. “Weird” because physical strength is not often an attribute associated with women.

Birth control pills

Healthy Youth, Act!

by Emma Nathanson

We’ve questioned the way sex ed is taught and brainstormed new methods health teachers should be using.

Photograph from the Oslo women's march

A Jewish Day School Revolution: Combatting Injustice

by Lily Drazin

With the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements on the rise, I knew I wanted to deal with the issue of sexual violence.

Shira Minsk in theater production of The Diary of Anne Frank

Redefining Theater

by Shira Minsk

I worked with a few of my peers to found the Actors’ Helping Alliance. Every season we pick a charity to partner with whose mission is connected to central themes in the show we’re performing.

2018-2019 Rising Voices Fellow Phoebe Chapnick-Sorokin at a 2018 March for Our Lives action that she planned. 

Students Against School Shootings

by Phoebe Chapnick-Sorokin

In my year and two months as a gun control activist, this type of conversation has been a common occurrence.

Topics: Protests, Schools
Pete Holmes doing stand-up

No, I Can’t Take This Joke

by Emma Cohn

In between the mutters of “slut” thrown out like gut punches, the message was clear. They were making rape jokes.

Topics: Feminism, Schools
Women of the World club yearbook photo

“Less Feminist”

by Madelyn Gelb

Women of the World was the club where I could talk about issues I really cared about, such as sexism and the wage gap.

Topics: Feminism, Schools
Book display for school social justice week

Standing for Social Justice at My School

by Abigail Glickman

Every year, my high school hosts a Social Justice Week, and this year, I’m the primary organizer.

Photograph of a school classroom

Orating for Justice

by Naomi Bethune

Sometimes, we unintentionally challenge the way others think. This prompts dialogue, which is essential for creating change.

Topics: Activism, Schools
Poster for Rainbow Rams, a school gay-straight alliance club.

Building Inclusivity at My Jewish Day School

by Nina Baran

Until last year, when the club was first started, we didn’t have a GSA; we also don’t have any LGBTQ+ books, and students aren't aware of staff who are trained in LGBTQ+ inclusivity.

Rising Voices Fellow Lila Zinner in Fifth Grade

American Education: Classrooms, Competition, and Corruption

by Lila Zinner

This education system, this one-sided method of teaching, this constant competition, is not working.

Topics: Schools, Children
Rising Voices Fellow Molly Weiner's school cross country team

Look Fast

by Molly Weiner

The first step the female athletic community can take towards fostering healthier norms is to share stories collectively, to address a pain that is all too common.

Topics: Schools, Athletes
San Francisco DACA rally

Immigration Mythbusters: Starting the Conversation

by Amy Jarkow

In my opinion, the fall of DACA should have warranted the same amount of coverage in school as the increasingly frequent mass shootings happening in this country.

Topics: Schools, Immigration
Gay-Straight Alliance bulletin board

An Education in Allyship

by Emily Axelrod

As word spread about what we were trying to do, a number of students told us they were in support of a GSA and would definitely participate if we succeeded in creating it.

Phoebe Chapnick-Sorokin Leading School Walkout

Leadership as an Answer to Privilege

by Phoebe Chapnick-Sorokin

Because of my privilege, I had a head start: I knew where I was going, and I had support. I still had to work hard and set goals for myself, but I recognize that privilege is one of the things that has helped me get where I am today.

Topics: Schools, Writing
Stock Photo of "I Voted" Stickers

Voting: Still a Right, Right?

by Emma Nathanson

Typically, walking through the doors of my high school gym brings on a feeling of dread, accompanied by the smell of body odor and wet paint. When I walked into the gym this past November, however, the only thing I felt was excitement. On the day of the 2018 Midterm Elections, I had decided to spend my Tuesday afternoon and evening as an election official, helping voters register, cast ballots, and, most importantly, go home with an “I Voted!” sticker proudly affixed to their shirts.

Inside of Quincy Market

My Power is My Privilege

by Naomi Bethune

Power and privilege have always played, and will continue to play, a very significant role in my life. As a biracial, Jewish woman, my life has always been complicated, and oftentimes, confusing. That being said, I acknowledge and know I have an incredible amount of privilege.

Milk Carton

Open Conversations and Dairy Products

by Ilana Jacobs

“Where are you thinking about going to college?” I’ve been asked this question by almost everyone I know. It feels like after your bat mitzvah, there’s a second rite of passage that no one tells you about: college decisions. Since the winter of Junior year, every conversation seems to take a turn towards schools. The question, “How are you?” has been replaced with, “How are the applications coming?”

Ruby Russell in First Grade

Who Gets To Choose

by Ruby Russell

In 2007, with long chestnut pigtails sprouting from the sides of my head, I attended my first day of kindergarten at a public school just outside of Boston. I was enrolled in what was called the Choice Program, an institution that four years later would implode with scandal.

Topics: Schools, Children
Math Equations on a Chalkboard

Mind Your Own Business

by Molly Weiner

My accelerated math class has nearly twice as many boys as girls. There are only five of us. I’m no stranger to a good mansplaining, or to feeling like an anomaly in a math bros club. While many interactions in Honors Precalc make me feel like a fish out of water, a comment like “mind your own business” really highlights just how different it is to be a girl in an advanced math class.

Topics: Schools, Mathematics
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