December 11, 2006
Director of Communications
Public Information Officer
Eight high school and four middle school students from across the commonwealth have been selected to serve on the Virginia Board of Education’s 2006-2007 Student Advisory Committee. The committee and board members Isis Castro and Eleanor Saslaw will meet for the first time in Richmond on Tuesday, Dec. 12. In the coming months, the students will identify and research issues of concern to public school students and report their findings and recommendations to the board in the spring.
“They put faces to the 1.2 million public school students that are educated in Virginia,” said Mrs. Saslaw. “I look forward to working with the students who have been selected.”
“The board values the varied points of view that the students share,” said Ms. Castro. “Hearing from them helps us in making decisions that may affect all students.”
The Student Advisory Committee members are as follows:
- Katlyn Allen, 12th grade, James River High in Chesterfield County
- Adam Baker, 11th grade, Tabb High in York County
- Brian Bills, 12th grade, Charlottesville High in Charlottesville
- Rachel Chitwood, 12th grade, Pulaski County High in Dublin
- Emma Horton, 12th grade, West Point High in West Point
- Jeremy Jones, 8th grade, Bailey Bridge Middle in Chesterfield County
- Paula Lewis, 8th grade, Lynnhaven Middle in Virginia Beach
- Justin Scott, 12th grade, Franklin County High in Rocky Mount
- Shelton Seaborn Jr., 12th grade, Greensville County High in Emporia
- Anna Skubel, 8th grade, George Washington Middle in Alexandria
- Monique Sturdivant, 12th grade, T.C. Williams High in Alexandria
- Kenzie VanDerwerker, 8th grade, Bedford Middle in Bedford
The Student Advisory Committee was established by the board in 2000 as a way for students to offer the board advice and raise issues affecting Virginia public school students. The committee is selected from nominations received from high schools, middle schools, and statewide student organizations and is comprised of one high school student from each of the Department of Education's eight administrative regions and four middle school students selected at large. Nominees must demonstrate solid academic performance, strong communication and leadership skills, involvement in a variety of school and community activities, and an interest in learning about and contributing to state policies related to public education.
Since creating the committee, the board has acted on a number of its recommendations including one made by the 2003-2004 Student Advisory Committee. Following that suggestion, the board established a quarterly Leadership in Cultural Diversity Education Award to recognize schools and school divisions that promote an understanding and responsiveness to cultural diversity.