The importance of listening to all

Today, schools involve so many actors: students, parents, teachers, but also the local sports club, students' extracurricular activities, the library, the nearby local businesses... Schools no longer operate on an island.

How can you find out how someone thinks about a certain topic? 

The first thing is to bring people together and listen to them. You already learned in module 4 how to get colleagues interested in the topic and how to attract them. Here you can invite them for an hour to think about the policy. It’s important to state what they can get out of it or why it’s important for them. 

Invite them to think together, but don’t set your expectations too high. Simply asking them to briefly brainstorm without much more can attract more people.

What do you do once you've brought them together?

  1. Welcome them and let them know why it's so important that they're present today.
  2. Introduce them to the topic: what are we going to talk about today? This can be about various media literacy topics, but when creating a media literacy policy, it’s wise to do one topic at a time (for example, cyberbullying, sexting, disinformation, cybersecurity…).
  3. Show your group some example cases on the topic where certain extreme situations occur. This requires them to form an opinion about the situation. Let them agree or disagree with the action in the case. Let the group discuss and come to a consensus. Use this information about the consensus as a basic direction for your policy.

Some examples of fictional (but very relatable) cases: 


Tim and Chloé (11 years old) are both sixth graders and have been a couple for several weeks. As part of their sexual exploration, they occasionally send 'sexy' pictures to each other via Snapchat. Tim, who is unaware of any wrongdoing, saves the photos and shows them to his best friends during playtime. When Chloé, together with her parents, reports this to her teacher, the school decides that unfortunately there is not much they can do about it. According to them, Chloé is responsible for sending the photos herself and should have thought more carefully about the risks.


Elliot (aged 10) keeps seeing videos on TikTok about aliens taking over the world. He gets all kinds of evidence from so-called experts, who tell him that all humans are slowly being replaced by identical aliens. He tells this to his classmates, because he fears they are aliens too. The story soon spreads. According to a video on TikTok, you can check whether someone is an alien by pouring a bottle of lemonade over someone. Elliot does this to a fellow pupil. That pupil quickly runs to a teacher. The teacher doesn't understand and punishes Elliot.


After the Christmas holidays, the Math teacher suddenly notices that Elias (16 years old) is no longer himself. He is much quieter than usual and does not cooperate in class. When the teacher asks what is wrong after class, Elias responds evasively. After a week, Elias still does not seem the same. The teacher calls in the student counsellor, who, together with the class teacher, schedules a meeting with Elias. During that conversation, it turns out that some fellow pupils have created a hate page about Elias on Instagram, full of edited photos. The page already has 132 followers, the vast majority of whom are peers from school. The student counsellor called the fellow students who created the page to task and obliged them to delete the page.

Complete and Continue