(2012-01-11) Since its inception, Speak Truth to Power has aimed to be a program with international scope, connecting teachers and students around the world. In December 2011, a school in Viareggio, Italy decided to make the Speak Truth to Power education curriculum a compulsory component of their student’s education (piano offerta formative). Both students and teachers were excited about the new program, and even more excited to learn that they were the first school to adopt the education curriculum for all of their students.
The school that chose to make the Speak Truth to Power program compulsory is a “professional” school that has about 1200 students. Unlike other schools in Italy, which prepare students for university, professional schools prepare students for work. For that reason, students in professional schools do not study history, philosophy, and law in depth, which significantly increases the impact of making STTP a compulsory part of education curriculum.
Speak Truth to Power was introduced to students in 2010 and taught to young people from 14 to 19 years old. Professor Romano Pesavento, who teaches law and human rights in this school and in Liceo Scientifico Vallisneri in Lucca, played a large role in making STTP compulsory along with fellow Professor Pesavento, who attended an STTP training session in Lucca in November 2010 and afterwards, actively participated in spreading information about our project with his colleagues and students. Professor Pesavento is very involved in human rights, focusing his work on immigration problems in Italy.
The decision to make Speak Truth to Power a compulsory part of the education curriculum in one of the schools in Viareggio shows how the personal and professional work of a single teacher can have a significant impact on students’ education.
See photos from the school: http://www.flickr.com//photos/rfkcenter/sets/72157628812076083/show/