Students Take Lead to Improve Fitness: Host Community Meeting

posted May 31, 2013, 11:44 AM by BHC Staff

It is our extreme pleasure to invite you to be present at a public action meeting at Sunset High School on June 7, 2013 from 1:30-2:30pm. This meeting represents the culmination of months of work on behalf of the Sunset Student Organizing Committee and highlights the students’ efforts to make their community healthier!  The organizing is sponsored by the Building Healthy Communities initiative.

BACKGROUND ON THE STUDENTS’ WORK:

On March 14th a group of students at Sunset High School led an all-school meeting exploring what they love about their school and what they think could be improved.  This meeting culminated a month long listening campaign, and seeded a committee with the mission to work together to find solutions to the problems they identified.

All students were invited to form a Local Organizing Committee, regardless of grade level, academic standing or disciplinary history.  Approximately 20 students accepted the invitation and committed to participate in the project through the end of the school year. 

After spending weeks learning how to define and craft an issue, the Sunset Student Organizing Committee decided that improving their weight room was the concern they would like to address.  This issue was also lifted up by last year’s organizing committee, who ultimately prioritized school lunches as the focus of their policy-change efforts.  (Read about last year’s organizing victory here). Like last year, students have been using the community change model utilized by People Improving Communities Through Organizing (PICO) to better understand the power structures that influence their daily lives and how to use the tools of democracy to improve their community.  The student leaders participate in a structured research process, meeting with public officials and policy experts to gain insight into their issue. 

The student committee members spend and average of four hours per week preparing and conducting meetings and learning critical thinking, public speaking, and other leadership skills.  They also have opportunities to partner with adults in regional trainings on community engagement strategies.  In addition, students are earning high school credit in English and Civics for their participation.  This collaborative learning is possible because of the commitment of Del Norte Unified School District leadership to exploring innovative youth development opportunities.

The Sunset Student Organizing Committee respectfully requests your presence at its Community Action meeting on June 7th at 1:30 PM, where the results of the research process and proposed solutions to improving the weight room will be made public.  Those who attend will see what young people are capable of when they organize together to address an issue they care about.  The students are looking forward to the opportunity to share their growth with adult leaders invested in their continued success.

Who:       Sunset Student Organizing Committee
What:    Community Action Meeting on Improving Sunset Weight Room
When:    June 7, 2013             
              1:30-2:30 PM
Where:   Sunset High School, Multi-Purpose Room              
              2500 Elk Valley Cross Road
              Crescent City, CA 95531 

 *Please allow ample time for parking, as the school parking lot will fill up quickly.
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