The position of a student representative on each District Education Council (DEC) is a new initiative beginning in the 2009/10 school year. It was created to give students more meaningful input on the issues that affect them, and to provide other DEC members with a different perspective and closer contact with students. This is part of a commitment #6 in When kids come first.
Student Representative on the
District Education Council
DECs develop broad policies and directives on a wide range of issues. You will be voting and deciding on matters such as how money gets spent, school closures, and the approval of district and school improvement plans and performance reports.
Any elected member of the Student Representative Council (SRC) executive can serve on the DEC.
You should talk to the President of your SRC or your Faculty Advisor, and express your interest to represent your district on the DEC. If you are chosen by your peers, your name will be forwarded to the DEC for submission to the Minister of Education.
For the 2009/10 school year, a student representative will be chosen by the end of September 2009. In future years, a student will be chosen by the end of May, and notified by the Minister before July 1st.
Only one student may sit on each council. There are no alternates present at meetings. This is the case for all other DEC members, and conforms to the provisions enacted in legislation.
The mandate for a student representative is one year. The mandate begins on July 1st of the year you are nomi-nated, and ends on June 30th the following year.
The number of meetings that are held during your mandate will vary from district to district. Each DEC must hold a minimum of 10 meetings per year. Some DECs have closer to 20, and these are typically held during the evening on weeknights.
We understand it might not be possible for you to travel to each and every meeting. For that reason, you can always participate through the use of Skype (video confer-ence), teleconference, or other means of communication.
You are responsible for your own transportation to and from the meetings. The loca-tion of the meetings within the district may change from time to time.
As with elected members, you may miss a meeting if there is demonstrable cause.
A student can be named to a subcommittee, which can increase your work load. You should get all of the details before you accept a subcommittee assignment. You also may be asked by another member to attend a committee meeting to provide input.
No, the student representative is not able to run for chair or vice-chair, primarily because of the short mandate.
Yes, you will be excluded from closed meetings at which discussion of personnel, including Superintendent reviews, takes place. All DECs must follow this rule.
Yes, you can vote on anything you are present for, including when you participate via Skype or other conferencing technology . However, you do not having voting power on discussions you are excluded from, nor can you vote on discussions you were absent for. This is just like every other DEC member.
DEC members do not get paid to serve on the Council as they are volunteers. However, your expenses for going to meetings will be reimbursed, as long as they are kept reasonable.
For further information, consult the documents below or contact Nancy Whyte at the Department of Education at 506-453-2618.