Students in Superintendent Searches
When Fayette County Public Schools began its search for a new Superintendent in 2014, our team realized no student voice was involved. Superintendent screening committees, an important part of the search process, did not permit students to be members.
Members of our team proposed, wrote, lobbied for, and organized a bill, House Bill 236, which would mandate the inclusion of students on those screening committees, as well as the typical teachers, parents, and administrators currently required. It was picked up by Representative Derrick Graham and gained traction in the House, ultimately passing 88-5.
Unfortunately, the bill stalled in the Senate, where two unrelated amendments about religious expression and transgender bathroom rights were tacked on by lawmakers. As passage became endangered, we held a rally at the Capitol to push for the original bill to become law.
Though the bill didn’t pass, it started an important conversation about student voice and proved that students are more than capable of involvement in education discussions and governance.
Read Our Takes
November 10, 2014
Involve Students in Search for Fayette County Superintendent
Sahil Nair and Andrew Brennen
The news that Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Tom Shelton is resigning and that his last day on the job will be Dec. 12 took many of us students by surprise, as evidenced by abundant social media posts.
December 15, 2014
Request for Fayette County Public Schools to Endorse Efforts to Amend Laws to Add Student Representation
We are writing on behalf of the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team and students across the district to formally request that the FCPS Board of Education endorse an effort to amend the laws relating to Superintendent Search Committees, Site-Based Decision Making Councils, and School Boards to include student representation.
December 16, 2014
Students Should Help Shape Kentucky Educational Policy
Susie Smith, Sahil Nair, Ross Boggess and Eliza Jane Schaeffer
Several weeks ago, members of the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team called for students to be included in the search for Fayette County's next superintendent.
January 11, 2015
Include students in search
I, along with other members of the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team, share columnist Richard Day’s Dec. 26 sentiments regarding the inclusion of students in the hiring of Fayette County’s next superintendent. As the school system’s chief constituents, we believe this is essential to the vision of a system that aspires to be “About Kids.”
February 8, 2015
Add Students to Superintendent Search Teams
Nicole Fielder, Eliza Jane Schaeffer and Susie Smith
When Fayette County Public Schools began looking for a new superintendent late last year, members of the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team asked the school board to include a student representative on the screening committee. Although board members told us they would make every effort to include students in the superintendent selection process, they said the makeup of the committee was set by state law and did not include a student member.
March 2, 2015
Students Can be Part of Superintendent Search
On Thursday, the Kentucky House passed House Bill 236 with a vote of 88 to 5. The bill, conceived by the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team, amends KRS 160.352 to allow for an optional student representative on superintendent screening committees. In the course of building support, the Student Voice Team found that some legislators question whether students are capable of following confidentiality guidelines set forth by such committees. We take the concern seriously and have done our research to allay it.
March 24, 2015
Student Voice Team Statement on Failure of House Bill 236
Over the last few months, the Prichard Committee Student Voice Team has employed every civic tool at our disposal to build support for the idea of allowing school districts to add a student to their superintendent screening committees.