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 Student Governing Board 
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After reading the article, Why Johnny Can't Disobey", I thought to myself that, wow, I was one that obey all authority. I was brought up by educators (my family) who told me to obey what the authorities said, but to have my own opinion on things. Well, I was to worried about staying out of trouble and making good grades to impress my grandparents that I became a robot to the system. Instead of having students do everything that the authorities say, why not give the students so choice on things. That is where a student governing board would be a great idea. This board, consisting of students, would help make school decisions and express ideas for improvement. Don't get me wrong, this may not work at every school, and it should only be used in the secondary schools, but giving students the opportunities to make decisions on how they want the school to be run can help develop creative thinking skills and skills to help solve important issues later on in life. Isn't that one area school is suppose to be trying to enforce on students. To be able to make it in the REAL WORLD. Every idea that the board would come up with would be looked at carefully by authorities, but if it is safe and non-detrimental to the school, then used it. We don't want our children going out into the real world as "yes-men/women". We want them to think for themselves, make mistakes themselves, and learn from their actions.

What does everyone else think about having student governing boards? Would it be good for ones school to have it? Would it be a distraction if it was in public schools? If you really like the idea of this student governing board, you can get more information by emailing James Calkins at uconn4us@kimbanet.com.

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Matt Rowe

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Wed Jan 25, 2006 3:31 pm
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I agree with Matt, after reading that article I was blown away to realize what our educational system as well as our society does to mold us into non-thinking robots. We are taught from a young age to do exactly as your told, follow all rules, and don't question it. As a student in high school I had no responsibility in being able to choose what classes I took, or what I would study. I think a student governing board would be a great idea. As long as they are closely monitored by faculty to assure they are moving in a positive direction. What all exactly do these student governing boards have control over? Do they have a say in curriculum, rules, dress codes, internships, or what else?

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Burl Greene


Fri Jan 27, 2006 3:12 pm
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To answers Burl's questions about the Student Governing Board, it was monitored by faculty. The principal of the school could veto any law or policy that the board knew was against state policy. Knowing this, the student governing board could decide the curriculum for the school, rules and regulations, lunch menus, etc. Basically, they had a say for everything that went on in the school.

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Matt Rowe

U CAN, UCONN


Sun Jan 29, 2006 3:55 pm
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How did the student governing board affect drop out rates? Did all students buy into this system? Are their any major drawbacks? I am shocked this system has not spread. Or maybe it has, this is just the first I have heard of it. Is it popular elsewhere? It just seems like students would have to buy into a system that gives them responsibility in making decisions. How can they complain when they are the ones taking part in decision making. Do you think this would create a larger society of free thinkers? People who are willing to make a change.

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Burl Greene


Sun Jan 29, 2006 6:25 pm
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To continue on Burl's questions on the student governing board, no it did not affect drop out rate because at the school this was implemented there was no drop out rate. It was in Westport, Connecticut, and at the time it was in the top 3 wealthiest cities in the United States. There was no questionnarie given to the students to see if they bought into the system, but about 95% of the student population was involved in this system, so I would have to say they bought in to it. Even the faculty got involved. One little drawback to this system is that there are new students coming into it every year. Maybe having some type of board in the middle schools would help transition the incoming freshmen into the system so they have a good idea what it is all about. Also, adding parents to this board would be beneficial so everyone who has a say in education could take part in this system. As to the question if it is popular, i don't know. At the time in the 1960s, it seemed like a good idea to the principal of Staples (Westport) to implement this system to get the students ready for the world of democracy. It would help to see that democracy works in real life. I can't officially say that it would create a larger society of free thinkers, but what i can say is that it will definately give these students a chance to see democracy working first hand and give them the realization that they have a say in all issues and to speak out about them.

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Matt Rowe

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Mon Jan 30, 2006 5:22 pm
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Dr. Turner

Since you were an educator and have been in different school settings, i was wondering what your opinion was on a student governing board in high school. Just wanted to point out that i have been reading my grandfather's emails since he has been in the hospital and his former students from Staples High School have been emailing him about how great and wonderful of an experience it was to have this system at their school. All the emails were very pro student governing boards. Not trying to say that is would always work, i just wanted to say that those students loved this demogratic option.

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Matt Rowe

U CAN, UCONN


Mon Feb 20, 2006 7:33 pm
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