If some students, families, and communities begin the game having written the rule book, others having access to it, and others being ignorant of it, then some students, families, and communities will win, others will pass, and still others will loose.
Why is there only one rule book and only some winners?
Is it because schools rely on society as much as society relies on schools, and some sectors of society have a louder, more powerful, and more privileged voice than others? Curricula, programs and achievement goals are set by these students, families, and communities. Their cultures, languages, and identities are centered, their experiences are valued, and their needs are met. But what of the others? Where are they located?
If they are not taught the rules, or better yet given the autonomy to create their own rules, their cultures, languages and identities are contested (even denied); their experience are left unconsidered; their voices silenced; their needs unfulfilled; their promise unrecognized, and their protest dismissed.
We need as many rule books as we have students and we need to recognize and support the potential and possibility of every student so the game can be won by all.
How many rule books are there in your school, and in your classroom?