Two students from the Jenkins Independent School district were inducted Sept. 19 along with 32 other students from eastern Kentucky into the first Appalachian Renaissance Initiative Student Senate.
The Student Senate is part of a $29 million Race to the Top grant received by the Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative and is comprised of students from17 school districts in the region. Each district selected a junior class and a senior class member to send to the Senate. Ted Allen was elected the junior representative and Michaela Hardin is the senior representative. Jenkins social studies teacher John Oliva is the Student Senate Majority Leader.
The goal of the Student Senate members is to develop means within their districts to obtain students’ opinions and ideas to improve education and formulate a plan to change their districts for the better.
Former Gov. Paul Patton was the featured speaker at the event. He urged students to think radically about such things as year-round school, longer school days, daily physical activity built into the curriculum, moving students by progress rather than grade.
The students will have a face-to-face meeting on Oct. 24 at the East Kentucky Exposition Center to discuss their plan for their district. In the future, however, most meetings will be held via Lync or other networking to avoid interference with classes and other student activities.