School council meeting focuses on behavioral expectations, LLC closure

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Rose Skylstad

Student, teacher, and parent representatives met to discuss school “norms” and “social and civic behavior” expectations as focuses for the year in school council’s first session this Monday.
Principal Henry Turner told the council that a group of students and librarians met to discuss the “norms” for the library Monday E-block. According to Turner, there was general consensus between administration and students on the library’s main purpose as a “primarily academic” environment.
“It may be a place to unwind and figure out the rest of your day, but it’s not a place to be loud and disrupt others,” he said.
Following the meeting, senior Joanna Mandinova, a student representative on the council said that she is “still confused” on the specifics of these norms. “We hear ‘civic norms’ but no one really knows what these norms are,” she said.
Turner explained that, when the details of these norms are finalized, they will be posted in all common “hang out spaces.”
Senior Gabe Kotsonis, another student representative for the council, said that student leaders and mentors, instead of teachers and administration, should take initiative in these spaces to promote a respectful environment.
He explained that students are more likely to listen to their peers because they lack the same “connection” with administrators. “Students need more of a peer figure to give them advice, rather than Mr. Turner,” said Kotsonis.
During the meeting, Turner explained that the school aims to make these social and civic skills a priority in classrooms, describing them as “important as academic expectations.” The administration is encouraging teachers to discuss and work on these skills with students in their classes to make this a focus for this school year, he added.
Additionally, a “TED Talk-style” event Saturday, Dec. 2 will promote the social and civic campaign, according PTSO co-president Sally Brickell. The event will focus on “civic engagement,” and five to six speakers from charities will present, she said.