Twenty-five public high school students have been named as new members of the 2023-2024 Commissioner’s Student Advisory Council, the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) announced on May 22.
Established to gather student feedback on critical issues impacting students and schools, the council connects Kentucky students with KDE staff to develop ideas to strengthen student voice and transform education.
The group meets regularly with the commissioner, both in person and virtually, to discuss how decisions made at the state level are affecting students throughout Kentucky.
“Members of the student advisory council offer valuable insights to us at the Kentucky Department of Education, and it is essential that students continue to have a meaningful and purposeful voice in decision-making,” said Commissioner of Education and Chief Learner Jason E. Glass. “Last year’s council offered a list of key recommendations regarding school safety, and we look forward to hearing from and working with these exceptional student leaders in the year ahead.”
The newly selected members will serve for the 2023-2024 school year and, if eligible, will have the option to serve again in the fall of 2024.
The new members, listed with their current grades and high school, include:
- Ava Benson, 11th grade, Henderson County High School
- Isaac Reese Blakeman, 11th grade, Somerset High School (Somerset Independent)
- Owen Borden, 11th grade, Highlands High School (Fort Thomas Independent)
- Cameron Breier, 11th grade, duPont Manual High School (Jefferson County)
- Owen Cody, 11th grade, McCracken County High School
- Manas Garla, 9th grade, Western Hills High School (Franklin County)
- Nicholas E. Hazelett, 11th grade, Paintsville High School (Paintsville Independent)
- Honette Irakiza, 10th grade, South Warren High School (Warren County)
- Trey Jackson, 11th grade, South Laurel High School (Laurel County)
- Sophia Langford, 9th grade, J. Graham Brown School (Jefferson County)
- Danica Rose Love, 11th grade, Meade County High School
- Gabriella MacAdams, 9th grade, Williamstown High School (Williamstown Independent)
- Constance Martin, 11th grade, Johnson Central High School (Johnson County)
- Anopa Musoni, 11th grade, Lafayette High School (Fayette County)
- Ronald (R.J.) Osborne, 10th grade, Whitley County High School
- Daniel Ratley, 9th grade, Grayson County High School
- Jocelyn Dawne Reddick, 11th grade, South Warren High School (Warren County)
- Caleb Robinson, 9th grade, Kentucky School for the Blind
- Sophia Staples, 10th grade, Paul Laurence Dunbar High School (Fayette County)
- Ian Swenson, 9th grade, Paducah Tilghman High School (Paducah Independent)
- Austin Eric Vitato, 9th grade, J. Graham Brown School (Jefferson County)
- Carley Isabella Watts, 9th grade, Hazard High School (Hazard Independent)
- Aliete Yanes Medina, 9th grade, Fern Creek High School (Jefferson County)
- India Young, 10th grade, Marion County High School
- Joshua Zyzak, 11th grade, Beechwood High School (Beechwood Independent)
The 25 new members join 12 returning members. Returning members, listed with their current grades and high schools, include:
- Hunter Combs, 11th grade, Knott County High School
- Joud Dahleh, 11th grade, Ignite Academy (Boone County)
- Justin Dunning, 11th grade, Lyon County High School
- Raima Dutt, 11th grade, duPont Manual High School (Jefferson County)
- Peter Jefferson, 10th grade, Henry Clay High School (Fayette County)
- Shraman Kar, 11th grade, duPont Manual High School (Jefferson County)
- Vijaykumar Karthikeyan, 11th grade, Paul Laurence Dunbar High School (Fayette County)
- Tanvi Rakesh, 10th grade, Randall K. Cooper High School (Boone County)
- Amy Roblero-Perez, 11th grade, Bardstown High School (Bardstown Independent)
- Malley Taylor, 11th grade, Craft Academy (Rowan County)
- Sarah Umbarger, 11th grade, Marshall County High School
- Bentley White, 11th grade, Kentucky School for the Deaf
More than 100 students applied for a spot on the advisory council this year.
Membership consists of four positions from each of the Kentucky Supreme Court Districts; one student from the Kentucky School for the Blind; one student from the Kentucky School for the Deaf; and student members enrolled in career and technical education pathways. Additional information about the council is available on the KDE website.
The first meeting of the 2023-2024 school year will take place virtually in August.
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