DeSoto ISD Student Advisory Council Provides Feedback
DESOTO – With an intentional focus on listening and learning from every stakeholder in the district, including students, DeSoto Independent School District Superintendent of Schools D’Andre J. Weaver, Ph.D., began his formal meetings with the newly-formed Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council this week.
“I spend a lot of time talking with adults about the things that we need to do to improve, and I had been waiting to hear from our students, the most important voice in our system,” said Dr. Weaver.
The council is comprised of 50 students from DeSoto High, DeSoto East Middle School, DeSoto West Middle School, and Curtistene S. McCowan Middle School who serve as a representative voice for their fellow peers. They will meet with the superintendent and selected members of his cabinet each six weeks.
“The conversations were heart to heart,” said DeSoto West Middle School seventh grader Mark Crockett who was glad to be included. “This experience was fun and I really enjoyed it. I feel so special because I was selected.”
The goal of the meetings is very similar to that of the other stakeholders’ advisory councils currently active in the district, to help the superintendent maintain a good pulse on the district via the exchanging of ideas, discussions about concerns and to offer balance and inform decision-making in the district.
Dr. Weaver Is Listening To The Students
“I like Dr. Weaver. He is very open to hearing student’s opinions even when they are not the most positive. He still hears them,” said DHS junior, Kamryn Williams who thinks that this is a way to bring about real change. “I feel like listening to the students will give better insight into what is happening in the schools.”
During the meeting, students were able to provide input on a variety of topics and simply share what is on their mind. The students spent the bulk of their discussion in this inaugural meeting centered on the upcoming calendar selection and the different approach that the district is considering to specifically address the culture and connectivity needs of the district.
“I feel like a lot of important issues were discussed today and they were sincerely heard,” began DHS junior Clifton Sanders. “I believe that this will really help improve the culture at DeSoto High School and the quality of education.”
In addition to exchanging ideas, the superintendent allows students the chance to provide insight on their various daily experiences, ask questions about what they deem to be important and impactful to learning.
Like Williams and Sanders, McCowan Middle School student, Keenlyn Singleton left the meeting feeling very positive. “I like how we talked about all of our concerns. I feel that since the superintendent heard our concerns, he will take it into more consideration to do something.”
The advisory council meetings fall strictly under the Unity umbrella in the district’s FOCUS Priorities plan and aims to ensure a positive internal and external culture, a sense of community and strengthens collaboration. This is one of the many ways that DeSoto ISD is focused on providing the best possible educational experience for our community of stakeholders.