A Message from Student Trustees
Raina and Soror
As we find ourselves nearly a month into 2023 already, it’s important that we take a moment to reflect on all that we learned, all the challenges we overcame and all of the growth we experienced in 2022.
As we find ourselves nearly a month into 2023, we believe that it is essential to take a moment and reflect on all that we learned, all the challenges we overcame, and all the growth we experienced in 2022. This school year marks our return to the pre-pandemic learning model. While we have not entirely recovered from the effect of the pandemic, we did see many reminders of life before COVID-19 return. From in-person graduation and commencement ceremonies, to our favorite clubs, teams and sports - there was a lot to be thankful for in 2022.
In our roles as Student Trustees, we are committed to advocating for all students of the Waterloo Region on the Board of Trustees. To ensure that every student has an opportunity to have their voice heard in the selection of the Student Trustees who represent them, we worked to reform the Student Trustee Election process. We are so proud that, for the first time, every secondary student of WRDSB will be directly voting for their representative.
The sixteen WRDSB secondary schools have been split into two geographical ridings, where one Student Trustee seat will be filled from each riding. Unlike prior years, there will be no limitations on the number of candidates able to campaign. By carrying out this Board-wide election, every WRDSB secondary student will now have the chance to help shape decisions made by the Board of Trustees.
For the second year in a row, the Student Roundtable continues to prove its efficiency in gathering direct feedback from the student body. 2022 saw us continuing to bring together students in Grades 7 to 12 for conversations about issues that are important to them – ranging from mental health to youth political engagement – and gathering their input on items up for discussion at the Board Table. We want to express our sincere gratitude for everyone who takes part in these meetings including guest speakers, staff, Trustees, and most of all, the student attendees. We continue to thank the Board for their support in helping us run the Student Roundtable safely and successfully.
Another key aspect of our commitment to amplify student voice at the Board Table is participating in WRDSB committees. Alongside other dedicated students, staff, and community members, we are honored to have been part of the School Naming Review Committee, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Group, French Immersion Review Committee, Policy Working Group, and Environmental Sustainability Committee.
Looking ahead to 2023, we continue to act as dedicated advocates for all WRDSB students at the Board Table and beyond. Every student the WRDSB serves should have a voice in shaping the future of learning that supports their success. While there still continues to be room for improvement, what brings a smile to our faces as we reflect on the year past is that each year we are in a better position than the one before when it comes to student representation.
It is vital that the WRDSB continues to dedicate resources to those struggling with the ever-lasting effects of the pandemic, and that closing the learning gap remains front and centre on the Board’s table. Furthermore, we urge the Board to continue their efforts to increase equity, inclusion, and accessibility in WRDSB schools.
On behalf of ourselves, past, and future Student Trustees, we thank everyone who has been helping us on our quest to ensure that students come first – each and every one. WRDSB students, it was, is, and always will be a pleasure to serve you!
Vaishnave Raina and Kenzy Soror
2022-23 Student Trustees