Home > Life Observations, Weekend Post > From Michelle Ryan Lauto’s Facebook to City Hall

From Michelle Ryan Lauto’s Facebook to City Hall



The lesson I learned this week [LiLTweeks] was from Michelle Ryan Lauto, a college freshman at Pace University who posted an invitation for New Jersey high school students to take a stand against state budget cuts. The result was an unexpected grass-roots movement that made K12 student civics history in the US.

A lesson in government taught by students

Social media has an organic bend in its DNA. Controlling its twist and turns is as difficult as catching a fish in open stream with your bare hands. Yet when it comes to social media, most schools try to catch it by cutting it out of the classrooms and fire walling it off campus. And that’s not all states are cutting from education. Budget cuts continue to swallow up school employee families. Well, a student named Michelle decided to roll off campus this week with a Facebook campaign that cut deep into educator’s way of doing things.

Social Media v. K12 Education

I was blown away by the limited media coverage of the grass-roots New Jersey story of students by the thousands, more than 18,000 actually, teaching us all a valuable lesson in social media civics. Students from all over the state of New Jersey taking a stance on City Hall for teacher job security and the plight of their education in larger class sizes, limited student services, school without art and music programs, and higher college tuitions is no small headline.

That was quite a show of force for change

This story has been a wake up call to remove this new kind of fear I’ve acquired over the years from allowing others to slowly choke the rebel out of me. Ms. Lauto and a few key peers coordinated one huge voice refusing to be unheard and have taught me reinforced lessons in leadership this week. Bravo! Bravo! Bravo to you all!

Stay focused, stay confident and take action for social change, it’s the civil thing to do.

LiLTweeks (Lessons I Learned This Week) is a weekly observation of some problems I’ve encountered and possible actions for resolve. If you have been inspired from this article please leave a comment and consider subscribing to the RSS (top right column) to have future post delivered to your feed reader [look for Weekend Post].

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