Student Coalition to travel to Capitol to discuss school issues

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Ronel Ghidey

Tuesday Student Coalition and other students are going to Jefferson City to attend a legislative forum hosted by the Missouri School Board Association (MSBA) to discuss school issues that affect the experience of students.
Senior Dayna Linneman, one of the students attending the meeting, said talking to government officials will allow for her and other students to express their concerns and give them a better understanding of how state government addresses school-related issues.
“Student Coalition is going on this trip to meet Missouri representatives,” Linneman said. “We’ll be spending the entire day at the Capitol just learning about the government and meeting people.”
Linneman’s mother, Deb Linneman, worked with Civics teacher Katherine Sasser to create the trip this year, after problems arose last year due to bad weather and the inability to reschedule the event at the Capitol. Sasser said attending the forum will give the students an opportunity to address their issues at the state level.
“The purpose of Student Coalition is to dig into issues related to a student’s experience with school and work to problem-solve to make the school better,” Sasser said. “Our trip to Jefferson City will provide us an opportunity to explore those issues on a broader level by interacting with legislators and school board members from across the state.”
Senior Anna Hickman  planned to go on the trip last year with the Youth Leadership program, and although they had to reschedule the event to RBHS, she said she enjoyed the experience, which she said made her see the school system in a new light.
“Last year I had the chance to not only listen to various issues Department of Education employees were addressing at the state level, but I also got to participate in the discussion, presenting issue and solution from the view of a student,” Hickman said.  “I am participating again this year because it was so informative and also impassioning and I want to further that experience.”
Being on the only student-led organization attending the forum, students such as Hickman are excited to learn more about the policies and decisions that affect her school and the process they go through.
“This year we will get the chance to hear from state legislatures,” Hickman said. “From that, I’m hoping to gain additional insight from their [state legislators’] point of view and maybe how educational policies come to be and their current effects.”
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