MV Student Voice Committee hosts discussions on improving Metea

The MV Student Voice Committee, a subgroup of the Democracy School Initiative, held an open forum with students and teachers on Thursday focusing on the goods and bads of Metea. Seniors Aarthi Krishnakumar, Vinayak Manepalli, and Avyay Surampalli, all led the forum which topics ranged from vaping in the bathrooms to discussions about achievement gaps. The meeting was separated into a student discussion and a teacher discussion in different rooms.

“Our hope was to really just show students that there is an outlet and community where you can come with your ideas and just voice your own opinions. They don’t even have to be negative or anything, because we had positive opinions too, we just focused on the more negative. Overall, though, we were just hoping to start a discussion,” Surampalli said. 

The MV Student Voice Committee’s goal is to continue to provide opportunities for students and administrators to work together to improve the lives of students at Metea Valley.

“It takes us back to our mission statement. For those that don’t feel like the school is a safe environment, or that don’t feel comfortable speaking out, this is trying to show them that the school is going to become a safe environment, it’s going to become a nice place. I know there are people out there who are trying to make an effort and make change happen. This is why we keep these discussions open and invite anyone who’d like to give their thoughts to come,” Krishnakumar said. 

Topics during the discussion included ways to improve problems with bathrooms, vaping, drug use, ways to end stigmas around getting involved at school, and closing the achievement gap. Several students and teachers congregated and gave their thoughts and ideas on how to fix these problems and just how to make school life better overall.

“Both teachers and students have very different perspectives in terms of school because they both have significant roles that are different from each other. We wanted to get an accurate gauge of what students and teachers liked and didn’t like about the school. We want to be able to take the two worlds and put them in one big melting pot. By really getting the core of the student body to speak out, we can make much needed actual change happen,” Manepalli said.

The committee will be running more discussions in the future-focused around specific topics that the students on Thursday were most concerned with. Structural change must begin with the people, any student is invited to the meetings which will be properly announced soon.