Enabling students to participate in school improvement through a students as researchers programme
This paper explores students’ potential to make a difference to their school through a Students as Researchers programme. It begins by discussing the impetus for the current increase in student voice initiatives in schools. It continues the debate around issues of student empowerment and students’ identity as change agents through an analysis of the development of a Students as Researchers (SAR) programme designed to support school improvement. The article investigates the possibilities for impact offered by a stepped approach to the student research process, early planning for impact and a strong student/teacher partnership. Issues are illuminated though reference to the authors’ work with Students as Researchers groups in several UK schools. The article concludes with an exploration of ways of enhancing the impact of students’ work on the development of their schools.