Partnership, Courageous Conversations

It Starts With Us 

Our world is an interesting place right now. Much is being made of the role of school, families and the community to host and build the capacity of others to have courageous conversations.  What if, instead of asking who should have and/or lead courageous conversations, we focused on the skills we need to have those conversations.

In Spite of Fear 

Having courage doesn’t mean not being afraid.  It means leaning into our fear and doing something in spite of it.  This video has some tips on how to have courageous conversations with your child’s school.

Value of Listening 

The word “converse” means to exchange thinking and ideas.  That means sharing ours and listening to those of others. This is an essential practice for schools and families that are working together. This video discusses how to listen more effectively, even when tensions are high.

Starting Courageous Conversations 

Things to remember when you enter courageous conversations:

  • Start from a place of curiosity.
  • Listen to understand.
  • Share your experience.
  • Practice with a trusted friend or family member first.
  • Embrace the vulnerability of courageous conversations.
  • Recognize that closure may not occur and that’s okay.

Begin By Trying These Things

  • Name the challenge- If the conversation takes courage for you to initiate or have, be clear about that. How does naming the challenge allow you to own your approach?
  • Establish norms- What do you need to feel comfortable speaking your truth? What might others need? What will everyone contribute so every person in the conversation can participate safely?
  • Set an intention-  What will be different because you had this conversation?
  • Check Body Language- What does how you are seated say even before the conversation begins?

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