Every year, students look forward to coming back from summer break and getting into the routine of school again. This may not be for homework and projects, but for school clubs, events, and social gatherings.
That is where Gleneagle’s student council comes in. They provide students with school dances, spirit weeks, and Valentine’s Day events that promote school culture and get the student body involved with something fun.
However, this year, there were not many participants in the winter formal, spirit weeks lacked enthusiasm, and primarily senior students participated in Talontines.
If these events were meant for students to have fun, then the objective of the events was not achieved. Perhaps the solution can be found when taking a deeper look at Gleneagle’s student council.
What the student council essentially does at Gleneagle is plan and execute events to promote school spirit. Although a student council is built on the opinions of the student body, much of what the Gleneagle student council does is shrouded in mystery. It even seems that way to some of the members of the club.
Members of The Cutting Edge recently surveyed 100 Gleneagle students, 25 members of each grade. While 87% of students knew about student council, most students did not know the presidents, Jobina Sitoh and Anika Venkatesh, both grade 12.
In fact, not one grade 9 or 10 student surveyed knew the names of the presidents. Just over a third of the surveyed students were unsure of student council’s role in the school. While 33% of the surveyed students said they do not think Gleneagle’s student council is essential for the school, the grade 9s and 10s surveyed overwhelmingly indicated that student government is a priority.
This data can be used to see that a large portion of the Gleneagle community is in the dark about what student council does, or is, despite it being a group that is supposed to represent the student body.
Gleneagle’s student council has grown to over 56 members that make decisions for events. Although there are many people involved, it is a constant cycle of a ‘student council only’ community. Executives of student council are chosen by the members of student council, and then the new executives choose new members.
This system makes it difficult to achieve a more varied opinion from other parts of Gleneagle, when already so few students care or know about student council. By having certain requirements to be in student council, as well as elections only available to student council members, it becomes exclusive.
The connection that must link the thoughts of the student body with the student council is communication. While students need to care about having representation, representatives need to find ways to make students care. Student council is the largest club in Gleneagle, and members have the responsibility to stay in touch with the student body. The students must also be active citizens and make themselves aware of what is happening in their government.
If students of the community are able to voice their thoughts and give input on events that are made for them, there is bound to be an increase of interest and student involvement. The ultimate goal of student council is to bring the school together and allow any student to be a part of the making of Gleneagle culture.
Students want more out of their student council. Gleneagle’s student government has great potential to grow from a club that organizes events to an organization that shares and represents student voice in the school. The only way this can happen is by opening up to the student community.