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Written by student contributors: Libby Cohen and Sophia Elahi

3. Student Council and Opportunities to Run for Leadership 

At Christa McAuliffe School of Arts and Sciences, the Student Council serves as the voice of the student body, even in the virtual realm. Despite being an online school, the Student Council plays a pivotal role in fostering a sense of community, representing student interests, and organizing activities that enhance the overall student experience. 


Student Council Activities 


  • Events and Activities: The Student Council takes the lead in organizing events and activities that promote engagement and camaraderie among students. This includes virtual game nights, talent shows, themed spirit days, all of which create a vibrant online community. 
  • Advocacy and Communication: In the absence of physical classrooms, effective communication is crucial. The Student Council takes on the responsibility of advocating for student needs and ensuring clear channels of communication between students and faculty. This involves addressing concerns, gathering feedback, and facilitating dialogue to enhance learning experiences. 


Election Process for Student Council 


The election process at Christa McAuliffe School reflects the democratic values upheld by the school. Students interested in running for Student Council positions, such as president, vice president, secretary, and other roles, participate in a fair and transparent election process that builds leadership skills and bonds the community together. 


  • Nomination Period: Students who wish to run for Student Council positions are invited to nominate themselves during a designated nomination period. This allows aspiring student leaders to express their interest in serving the student body. 
  • Campaigning: Candidates engage in campaigning, creating presentations, videos, or other materials to showcase their qualifications and proposed initiatives. This stage allows students to share their vision for the school and connect with their peers. 
  • Election Day: All students have the opportunity to cast their votes for their preferred candidates. The democratic process ensures that student leaders are chosen based on the collective will of the student body. 
  • Results and Inauguration: Following the election, the results are announced, and the newly elected Student Council members are inaugurated into their roles. This moment marks the beginning of their term, during which they will work collaboratively to represent and enhance the student experience at CMASAS. The opportunity to be a part of student council without taking on a commitment like a leadership role exists, too. Student council welcomes anyone who wishes to join and is a great way to dip one’s feet into the world of leadership opportunities at the school. 


4. Project/Assignment Leadership 


At Christa McAuliffe School of Arts and Sciences, the approach to education extends beyond traditional classroom settings and curriculums, empowering students to take leadership roles in their assignments and projects. The philosophy is rooted in the belief that true leadership involves more than just guiding others; it encompasses the ability to take charge, make informed decisions, and drive projects toward successful outcomes.


Student Empowerment in Assignments 


  • Choice and Autonomy: Students are encouraged to take ownership of their learning by providing them with choices and autonomy in selecting their assignments or projects to best suit them. This freedom allows students to align their coursework with their interests, fostering a sense of engagement and personal investment in the learning process. This student-centric approach fosters engagement and personal investment, moving away from the stress of a one-size-fits-all model and instead encouraging real[1]world collaboration with teachers and students to submit work they are proud of. 
  • Project-Based Learning: The school emphasizes project-based learning as a fundamental approach. Through projects, students have the opportunity to lead and collaborate with peers. Taking charge of a project involves planning, organizing tasks, setting timelines, and ensuring that the team works cohesively. These experiences develop critical skills in project management and teamwork. 
  • Critical Thinking and Decision-Making: Leadership in assignments goes beyond project management. Students are encouraged to take leadership in critical thinking and decision-making aspects of their assignments. This involves analyzing information, making informed choices, and demonstrating a deep understanding of the subject matter. The goal is to nurture students who can approach assignments with a leadership mindset, actively seeking solutions and taking initiative in creative and out of the box ways. 
  • Presentation and Communication Skills: Assignments often culminate in unique presentations or discussions. Students are coached to take leadership in presenting their work effectively via a variety of creative options. Students have utilized this opportunity and created presentations in formats like slideshows, short videos, podcasts, and even picture-books. 



Real-World Application 

The emphasis on taking leadership in assignments prepares students for real-world scenarios where leadership in projects and assignments is a valuable skill. Whether in academia or the workplace or in our personal lives, the ability to take charge of assignments demonstrates initiative, responsibility, and a proactive approach to learning and problem-solving that is unique to our school. 


To conclude, Christa McAuliffe School of Arts and Sciences is not just an institution of learning but a breeding ground for future leaders who embrace a leadership way of life. The diverse range of opportunities, combined with a commitment to values-based living, continuous learning, and empowering those around us, ensures that students here are equipped with not only with academic knowledge but with a deep understanding of what it means to lead in every aspect of their lives to better themselves and those around them