Supporting and Sustaining SSWCs

The Age of Student-Run Writing Centers By Fairfax High School Principal Dave Goldfarb

In this article, Dave Goldfarb, a teacher-leader of the Northern Virginia Writing Project and Principal at Fairfax High School, outlines the strategic thinking involved in the development of a student-run writing center at school.

Fostering Writing Centers as Sites of Advocacy by Jeffrey Austin (Skyline Writing Center, MI), Kyle Boswell (Mattawan Writing Center, MI), Kate Hutton (Herndon Writing Center, VA), and Amber Jensen (George Mason University, VA)

In this IWCA-sponsored panel at NCTE 2016, CAPTA President Amber Jensen, CAPTA Vice President Kate Hutton, incoming IWCA Secondary Schools Representative Jeffrey Austin, and #wcchat founder Kyle Boswell examine secondary school writing centers as sites of advocacy. Writing centers are powerful sites of advocacy when they engage and amplify student voices, involve teachers in reflecting on writing pedagogy, and foster teacher leadership within and connection among institutions. Drawing upon research and practice, this panel shared strategies for and results of advocacy from secondary school writing centers.

High School Writing Centers By Richard Kent

Richard Kent, author of A Guide to Creating Student-Staffed Writing Centers, Grades 6-12, has compiled this site, which includes articles, videos, books, and other online resources, to supplement his helpful guide for writing center directors.

Investing in Leadership: Student-Run Writing Centers By National Writing Project Radio

On February 28, 2013, site leaders and writing center conference coordinators from the NVWP discussed the power of student-run writing centers with the National Writing Project on NWP Radio. The one-hour radio show, titled “Investing in Leadership: Student-Run Writing Centers,” features NVWP Director Paul Rogers and Teacher Consultants Amber Jensen and Allison Hughes as well as Beth Blankenship, Ellen Reilly, and student tutors from Edison, Centreville, and Oakton high schools. Jensen, Hughes, and Blankenship are high school writing center directors among the coordinators of the annual high school writing center conference from George Mason University, Fairfax County Public Schools, and the Northern Virginia Writing Project. Ellen Reilly, Principal of McLean High School, has overseen the development of several writing centers in Northern Virginia high schools.

The New Power Generation: Writing Center Revolutions in the Contact Zone (NCTE 2017) by Jeffrey Austin (Skyline Writing Center, MI), Kyle Boswell (South Haven Writing Center, MI), and Kate Hutton (Herndon Writing Center, VA)

In this IWCA-sponsored panel at NCTE 2017, CAPTA Vice President Kate Hutton, IWCA Secondary Schools Representative Jeffrey Austin, and #wcchat Founder Kyle Boswell examine how writing center directors can develop new strategies to successfully navigate the “contact zone” between their programs and the institutions housing them to facilitate change. Experienced directors discuss challenging assumptions through missioning, visioning, and tutor training, using autoethnographic qualitative data to reframe narratives, and building professional “safe houses” for support.

The Successful High School Writing Center Edited by Dawn Fels and Jennifer Wells

This book highlights the work of talented writing center teachers who share practices and lessons learned from today’s most important high school writing centers. The authors offer innovative methods for secondary educators who deal with adolescent literacy, English language learners, new literacies, embedded professional development, and differentiated instruction. The Successful High School Writing Center demonstrates how writing centers help school communities grapple with the realities that come with literacy education. Depicting real-life writing centers as leaders in literacy education, the accounts presented will enrich the work of secondary educators, writing tutors, and student writers in socially significant ways.

What is Essential is Invisible to the Eye: Beliefs, Behaviors, and the High School Writing Center by CAPTA 2016 Keynote Dr. Jennifer Wells

Dr. Jennifer Wells, Director of Writing at New College of Florida and co-editor of The Successful High School Writing Center, presented “What is Invisible is Essential to the Eye: Beliefs, Behaviors, and the High School Writing Center” at the 2016 Capital Area Peer Tutoring Association Conference at George Mason University.

Writers, Coaches, Leaders: How Being a Middle School Writing Tutor Impacted Our High School Experiences by Peters Township High School (PA) Tutors Carla Goldsmith, Michael Barry, Alex Garcia, Natalie Glover, Sanah Handu, Raeanne Heuler, Isabella Mihok, Devon Milley, and Olivia Nix

This article was published in IWCA’s online journal The Peer Review.  Nine high school students from grades 9–12 to show how participating in their writing center at Peters Township Middle School (PA), directed by SSWCA Middle School Representative Renee Brown,  affected their high school career and beyond. Each of the nine former members volunteered to contribute to this article without receiving any academic credit. To help others understand what they hope to accomplish, they provide a short history of their middle level writing center practice and theory.

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