The Kids Education Revolution is a bold and ambitious collective of schools and educational organizations that are working towards reimagining education at scale and are driven by a profound belief in the power of student leadership. It aims to influence the conversation of what constitutes an excellent education by listening to and learning from our children and youth to fulfill the individual potential of each child and the collective potential of our nation.

Teach For India,
2nd Floor, Godrej One, Pirojshah Nagar,
Vikhroli East, MUMBAI – 400079
support@kidseducationrevolution.org

Learnings from Pune Regional Summit

Theme: Stories of my Ed-Journey
Description: Walk through a street full of experiences of student potential and voice, a showcase of kids’ journey of education. Interact and engage in the learning experience the kids will create!

On the 18th of November, KER moved from being an idea to something very, very real as our Pune team launched Pune’s Regional Summit. Here are some of our learnings from our time at the summit. Our hope is that these will be relevant for each one of us in the work that we do as we work with and for children.

  • The power of student’s voice is truly remarkable.

There’s something particularly raw, nerve-touching, and empowering about hearing a student describe their own experiences of learning. Our emcee, Mahesh’s description of his journey from not knowing a word of English a few years ago to now having the confidence and articulation to stand in front of a huge audience was particularly poignant. Mahesh’s confidence and self-awareness on stage also reminded us of how important it is to shine our spotlight on children who are truly ready to engage meaningfully with adults. Oftentimes, as adults, we have the habit of “stealing the struggle” from our children instead of letting them stumble and get back on their feet all by themselves. However, when a child like Mahesh who is truly ready takes the stage, we don’t even find the need to intercede.

  • That diversity matters in building a collective.

The Pune Regional Summit was hosted by over 350 students from a variety of backgrounds. There were students from classrooms of iTeach, Teach for India and Avasara Academy, students from Symbiosis, St Mary’s and Indus International Schools, students from Marathi medium municipal schools in Pune and even Satara! The diversity of students present in light of the high caliber of displays put up by all of them reinforced the idea that a child’s background is not indicative of their potential, that the ability to thrive is in every child.  As one of our student leaders Tania Apshankar, a student St. Mary’s School and author of her first novel, Untethered, succinctly put it, “Everyone is coming together with an open mind, exchanging ideas, not just from the people who are showcasing at stalls, but even the audience has nice stories to tell.”

  • That when you give kids power, there is no reason anymore for them to wrestle with power.

It was incredible to see 350 kids, unsupervised, needing NO “behavior management”. They had nothing to fight about – because ownership, responsibility, and power was shared with them.

  • KER is not an event, it is a “lens shift”.

It is seeing what is ALREADY there for kids. It is hearing what is already inside them. It is capturing what they are.

  • Those kids have the capacity to shift, to inspire, to change us – if we just listen to, and learn from them.

There were some powerful phrases we heard when we listened:

“I didn’t imagine things could be done like this.”

“I never thought about it this way before.”

“Potential.”

“No one is a failure. Everyone is good in their own way. We need the education to reflect that.”

“It was inspiring to see how articulate kids were.”

“Kids were accepting technical glitches and problems, something adults aren’t comfortable to do.”

” I came here with cynicism about student leadership. But you [kids] have proved me wrong. I stand corrected.”

And don’t forget to check out what we learned from our Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, New Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Mumbai Regional Summits too!