November 30, 2021

Statement on KDE Guidelines for Non-Voting Student Members on SBDMs

The Kentucky Student Voice Team is excited to see the continued progression of student voice in our state resulting from the newly-simplified process of diversifying representation on School-Based Decision Making Councils (SBDM). Schools are now able to include non-voting student members by a simple vote rather than requiring state sanction.


From dress codes to grading policies, SBDMs govern integral aspects of our lives and education experience while largely excluding our voices from the table. Today that begins to change.


Student representatives on SBDMs should reflect the diversity of our schools and commit to amplifying the voices of their peers. Our team supports the guidelines issued today by the Kentucky Department of Education, which specifically recommend empowering the student body to create their own democratic process for choosing a representative.


The continued elevation of students within school governance structures is essential to creating an equitable, just, and meaningful education experience for the entire student body. Today is a small but meaningful step in that direction.


The Kentucky Student Voice Team is a statewide organization of young people who are co-creating more just, democratic Kentucky schools & communities as research, policy & advocacy partners.