Five Ways to Involve Students at Board Meetings

screen-shot-2017-02-11-at-4-50-15-pmDo you want to give your board members a glimpse into your classrooms? Maybe you schedule tours or board visits each year.  Here are five more ways students can engage regularly with your board members!

  1. Start with the Pledge of Allegiance. Do you say the Pledge of Allegiance at your monthly meeting? If so, why not invite two elementary students to help you?  Students have the opportunity to speak in front of a larger group/authentic audience, and your Board gets to see the students in action!
  2. Conduct special recognition ceremonies. Each month, find some students to recognize at your regular board meeting. Add a standing agenda item – Special Recognitions/Presentations. Invite local legislators sometimes too!  For example, we have recognized PA State Tennis Champions, Widener Leadership Scholarship Award Winners, etc. If you have press at your meetings, they may cover the story and extend the celebration to the community.
  3. Provide student activity reports! Invite students to share what is happening in their buildings.  This only takes a few minutes and Board members get to hear the enthusiasm and excitement the students have for their learning.  Monthly, we invite elementary, middle, and high school students to share information about recent events, upcoming events, and fundraisers.  The Board really enjoys hearing first-hand from our learners.
  4. Involve them in Board Appreciation month!  Our students participate in Board Appreciation Month in January. They create cards and art work, bring treats, and warm our board members’ hearts with kind words and creative illustrations.
  5. Highlight each school once per year! Each of our schools hosts a Curriculum and Technology sub-committee meeting once per year.  This provides board members the opportunity to visit the schools.  One of the first few agenda items is a spotlight on the school. (This typically takes 15-20 minutes.) For example, last year our High School counselor highlighted our Dual Enrollment program.  Our middle school students shared a recently created MakerSpace and Student Lounge.  Each school highlights something different, and typically these presentations are all student-led. Parents are also encouraged to attend and participate.

Providing these opportunities not only engages the Board, but it also engages more parents at our meetings. Students have the opportunity to plan and deliver a short speech for an authentic audience!

How else could we engage learners in our board meetings?

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