• decorative title banner: student advisory committee

  • The Board & Superintendent Student Advisory Panel was created in 2017 to expand opportunities for student voice to be included in major district decisions. Additionally, the group allows students to serve in important leadership roles, while learning powerful lessons about organizational management, operations, governance, civic engagement, and collaborative decision-making.   

    Board & Superintendent Student Advisory Panel Charter

Group Objectives

  • Dialogue: To discuss with each other and members of administration and the Board of Trustees happenings and concerns at campuses and within the district as a whole

    Perspective: To review high profile Board of Trustees agenda items and provide a student viewpoint  

    Action: To engage in projects that benefit fellow classmates, the district, and the community

Group Membership

  • Panel members apply to join the group and are selected by the campuses they represent. Currently, the group consists of two students from each grade at Hays, Johnson and Lehman High Schools. Live Oak Academy selects two students campuswide. 

    For membership information contact:
    harvest.coats@hayscisd.net

Student Members

  • 2021-2022 Members

    Group Photo of Advisory Members

    Representing Hays, Johnson, and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, are: Jeremiah Hightower-Santos, Cassidy Clark, Krystal Cortez, Ava Bedwell, Hunter Halenza, Bridget Pennington, Knyla Kemari, James (Trace) Jansen, Nayeli Munoz, Jordan Harding, Vivian-An, Nguyen, Aiden (Denny) Oneal, Morgan McKalip, Ryan Weeks, Alyssa Jones, Halie DeLeon, Ikaika Engleman, Deema Omar, Yoshi Nakachi, Haylee Rhodes, Kimberly Cruz, Kaunli Hehr

    2020-2021 Members

    Representing Hays, Johnson, and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, are: Aiden (Denny) Oneal, Angely Irizarry Chico, Audrey Jones, Ava Bedwell, Brian Pesina, Bridget Pennington, Daniel Bergmann, Daniel Vasquez, Deema Omar, Hunter Halenza, Jordan Harding, Lukas Champion, Morgan McKalip, Ryan Munoz, Samantha Kasson, Vivian-An, Nguyen, and Yoshi Nakachi, Kimberly Cruz, and Cloey Guillen

    2019-2020 Members

    Representing Hays, Johnson, and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, in alphabetical order are: Daniel Bergmann, Avery Borrel, Marco Cano, Bodhi Chae, Peyton Faulks, Hunter Halenza, Grace Hammond, Audrey Jones, Morgan McKalip, Madi Murphy, Yoski Nakachi, Deema Omar, Denny O'Neal, Dalton Pennington, Bridget Pennington, and Daniel Vasquez

    2018-2019 Members

    Representing Hays and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, in alphabetical order are: Daniel Bergmann, Marco Cano, Bodhi Chae, Madyson Christian, Peyton Faulks, Audrey Jones, Madi Murphy, Matthew Nino, Beatrice Pennington, Luke Roehrig, Ashley Rosendo, James Vargas, Daniel Vasquez, and Tulsi Vaswani

    2017-2018 Members

    decorative photo of students

     

    Representing Hays and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, in alphabetical order are: Marco Cano, Bodhi Chae, Madyson Christian, Michael Hellmer, Sierra Merritt, Madi Murphy, Matthew Nino, Beatrice Pennington, Luke Roehrig, Ashley Rosendo, Keely Smith, Josh Torres-Whitmer, James Vargas, and Tulsi Vaswani

Meetings & Notes

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  • May 12, 2022

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 5/12/2022
    On May 12, members of our Hays CISD School Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel joined Superintendent Dr. Eric Wright, Hays CISD Trustees and district administrators on a tour inside of Sunfield Elementary! Thursday's tour, led by representatives with Bartlett Cocke General Contractors, allowed many to get a first-look at the interior of the new Elementary School, which will open in August 2022. Sunfield Elementary, approved by voters in the May 2021 bond election, is a 117,611 square-foot campus that's located within the Sunfield subdivision in Buda. The new elementary campus in Sunfield can house up to 900 students grades K - 5 and is being built on 16.5 acres of land. During the tour, the Advisory Panel and Trustees saw the work taking place in multiple classrooms, as well as computer labs, library and much more. In addition, our district also recognized the efforts of senior members of the Advisory Panel who will be graduating later this month. Congratulations to our senior Advisory Panel members and thank you for your dedication to Hays CISD!
     
    Hays CISD Student Advisory Panel seniors 2022
    Hunter Halenza – Hays HS
    Bridget Pennington – Hays HS
    Aiden (Denny) Oneal – Johnson HS
    Morgan McKalip – Johnson HS
    Deema Omar – Lehman HS
    Yoshi Nakachi – Lehman HS
    Kaunli Hehr – Live Oak Academy
    Comments (-1)
  • April 10, 2022

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 4/14/2022

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Students and faculty began with talking about something good going on in their lives. Students mentioned many great things. Yoshi was excited to tour Stanford. Deema found the perfect prom dress. Alyssa was practicing her speech for the Shriner’s Temple. Knyla was accepted to Brown University. Nayeli was accepted into honor society. Ikaika tied the school record on the pole vault on an 11’6” jump. We are so proud of all the great things happening to our students.
    • Dr. Watson circled back about the 8thperiod option for high schoolers. It was discussed that Friday could be a rotating A/B day and M/W, T/TH could be non-rotating schedules.
    • SAT testing was discussed. Students are now required to take the SAT at school and it is now free for them to test and they are able to send the results to 4 universities for free instead of paying for them. Some students mentioned bells going off during testing that created some interruption during testing and what can be done to improve a calmer atmosphere.
    • The bond was discussed in reference to the growth of the district. Enrollment projections were explained. The students will tour the new elementary school at the following meeting.
    • Students and administrators believed it is important for students to engage in community volunteer experiences. All students agreed that high schoolers should be required to volunteer 10 hours a year and with an additional 16 hours should be able to earn a graduation cord for community service that is not based on membership or grades such as the other clubs that offer community service cords.
    • Students were asked to give their feedback by completing the student engagement survey online that was sent from their campus principals.
    Comments (-1)
  • March 10, 2022

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 3/22/2022

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Students and faculty began with talking about something good going on in their lives. Students mentioned many great things taking a spring break trip to the beach and spending time with family over the break. Also, student member Alyssa was the Shriner Ambassador and threw the first pitch for the Astros game in Houston.
    • Dr. Watson discussed in length about an 8th period option for high schoolers. The students looked at slides of possible schedules and gave insightful feedback about their preferences based on athletics, CTE student schedules, and AP classes among other preferences.
    • Ryan discussed lunches and issues of standing in long lines. A solution was presented to join classes for a larger, but longer lunch time in an A/B lunch period.
    • Students all agreed that AM homeroom would be more effective use of that class time.
    • Students wanted more information and better communication about taking 12 courses for free at ACC and help deciding if on ramp/ dual credit was a good choice for them, and what the specific differences of the two programs are.
    • Administrators and students discussed option of 8 period with A-B rolling
    • Dr. Wright asked students why they don’t like to wear their ID’s and all students agreed that they did not like bright lanyards or unflattering photo ID’s and that it was a matter of vanity. A popular solution was to allow students to pay a nominal fee to re-print their ID’s with a clear photo that they are allowed to upload themselves, similar to a passport ID.
    • A list of cord submissions was discussed for community service hours. Anyone is allowed to join and service hours would be tracked through the program sponsor.
    Comments (-1)
  • Feb 10, 2022

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 2/10/2022

    February 2022 Meeting

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Students and faculty began with talking about something good going on in their lives. Students mentioned many great things including training for an upcoming mountain bike team racing event to another student winning their soccer match against Bowie.
    • Bond Projects for the 2022 Bond Package were discussed including items such as a new Elementary school, Academic Support Center and new buses for the growing district needs. Current enrollment and projected enrollment counts were considered.
    • Previous Student Advisory member Daniel Bergmann joined the event to discuss his first-year post HS graduation attending the University of Texas. He talked about his own expectations of college and answered student questions including giving advice on how to access resources such as a writing lab and mental health counselor once in college.
    • Students were asked about their preference for a 7 or 8 period school day. All students were unanimous that they prefer an 8-period school day. They also mentioned not having enough time to eat in a calm and relaxing manner because of a time shortage. All students wanted to go back to “Mega Lunch” where they had a full hour to eat and finish school assignments.
    • Exemptions for finals were discussed with students wanting all HS campuses to follow the same guidelines for consistency, fairness and simplicity. A few students noted that AP class grade is higher than a on level grade requirement for exemption and the idea to switch those requirements to make it fairer. Getting an appeal form for absences to adhere to the exemption was also considered.
    • Meeting ended with the possibility of students meeting at the construction trailer of Sunfield Elm to see the construction progress at the next meeting.
    Comments (-1)
  • January 2022 Meeting

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 1/13/2022

    January 2022 Meeting

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Students and faculty began with talking about something good going on in their lives. Students mentioned many great things including training an old dog to do new tricks to one student getting a full scholarship to Stanford.
    • Bond Projects for the 2022 Bond Package were discussed including items such as a new Elementary school, Academic Support Center and new buses for the growing district needs
    • Attendance in relation to Covid/ Omicron
    • School Calendar (headed for Board approval) All the students agreed they are excited to get the extra day at Halloween off as a holiday on the 22/23 calendar.
    • Online STAAR testing- Many students said online testing was more difficult than testing by writing on a piece of paper but that online learning during Covid did make using technology easier than before Covid/online learning.
    • Student led inquiry about using Google classroom over other apps such as Schoology because the students liked the functionality and userability of Google Classroom over other options.  
    • Watched the CNN live interview with Dr. Wright discussing the need for substitute teachers
    Comments (-1)
  • December 2021 Holiday Luncheon

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 12/9/2021

    The Hays CISD Board & Superintendent Student Advisory Panel was created in 2017 to expand opportunities for student voice to be included in major district decisions. Additionally, the group allows students to serve in important leadership roles, while learning powerful lessons about organizational management, operations, governance, civic engagement, and collaborative decision-making. Today the 2021 student members were treated to a holiday luncheon by Dr. Wright and the board for all of their hard work and efforts. 

    Photo of Student Advisory members

    Comments (-1)
  • November 2021 Meeting

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 11/11/2021

    November 2021 Meeting

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Students and Faculty took a special moment to honor and appreciate Veterans on Veterans Day and tell stories about the Veterans in their own families.
    • Dr. Wright discussed cell phone usage policy. Students agreed it did not need updating but did think that teachers making students leave their cell phones at a designated spot in the classroom helped their focus. Students said that in high school their level of personal responsibility should be developed enough to make good choices on their own.
    • Discussion about social media threats and how to curb spreading online hoaxes and threats
    • Students talked about student engagements in UIL and other extracurricular activities. Students wanted a school day to browse different student organizations and athletics to get better information about joining, the time commitment and effort required. Many students noted that they were not aware of some of the options like water polo, or mountain biking club.
    • Dr. Wright talked about the new 5-11 emergency use approval vaccines available.
    • The purchase and installation of the new air purifiers was discussed. Students were hopeful that the purifiers would help the overall air quality and keep students in class.
    • December Luncheon location was voted on.
    • Board member Ms. Orosco spoke about the importance of community service. She talked about ways to get involved in volunteering including at the Hays Clothes Closet. It was proposed to have school time to volunteer once or twice a year to promote community engagement and service. It was discussed to create a tab on the website  under resources to volunteer at the Hays Clothes Closet.
    Comments (-1)
  • First Meeting of 2021/22 School Year – September 9th, 2021

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 9/9/2021

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Students and attending members each contribute “One good thing” that has been happening in their lives. Answers ranging from achieving valedictorian status and getting their drivers licenses were mentioned.
    • New student members were welcomed into the advisory panel and encouraged to share their thoughts and concerns.
    • Many students mentioned that they feel safest by continuing to wear masks on campus.
    • Students are excited about being back in school for in-person learning. Students commented that they are beginning to re-learn how to interact in social interactions, and feel less mental anguish of being isolated in previous year due to Covid. Positives of in school learning included students excited to engage in class discussions, student collaborations, and working on hands-on projects instead of on a computer.
    • Students noted many positives with in-person learning including teachers responding right away to question and concerns. They like the routine of getting ready in the morning. A few students still preferred the independence and self-structure of online learning environment in the 20/21 school year.
    • Students Response to Intervention: The students are utilizing What I Need (WIN) time to receive tiered instructional support each day. Students were very relived to be able to finish homework and get a deeper grasp of subject material during this extra class time. Students who were first hesitant about block scheduling said they ended up preferring the schedule but wished the days could be more consistent instead of every other day (hard to remember), such as Mon-Wed and Tue -Thursday type of class schedule.
    • Some students thought having vaccine clinics available on campuses would make it easier for those students and faculty who wanted to get vaccinated easier and promote herd immunity. Other students were hesitant about getting vaccinated but said they feel more and more confident (of the safety) after seeing their peers have no serious side effects.
    • The meeting ended with future SAP meeting dates and locations.
    Comments (-1)
  • May 2021 Meeting

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 5/6/2021

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met for the final meeting of the 2021 school year. The following items were discussed:

    • Bond and Trustee results - discussed the bond measures that passed on the  May 1, 2021 on the City and School Election
    • Met the new freshman student members for 2021-2022
    • Celebrated the 2021 Graduate members including Daniel Bergmann at HHS, Audrey Jones at LHS, Daniel Vasquez at LHS, and Cloey Guillen at LOA
    • Kyle Area Youth Council gave a presentation on Education Reform including adding a Drivers Education course, life courses, International Baccalaureate program, and language programs.

    student student student students

    Comments (-1)
  • April 2021 Meeting

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 4/1/2021

    The Board and Superintendent Student Advisory Panel met and the following items were discussed:

    • Bond Update – Panel discussed the bond projects that will be on the May 1, 2021 ballot. If approved by voters, these projects would affect most campuses in Hays CISD and would provide the infrastructure needed to meet current and projected student enrollment.
    • Legislature/ Stimulus Dollars for Education -Texas will now receive a third round of federal stimulus funding for K-12 public education, ​estimated at $12.4 billion​. The funding is in addition to the $1.3 billion and $5.5 billion provided to Texas schools under the first two rounds of COVID-19-related federal stimulus legislation.
    • Hays HS Mascot and Branding release of Hays Hawks- the Hays HS brand guide and brand locker was shared with students. Students were proud of their student led mascot name choice and logo. “The Hawk is an impressive mascot and we really enjoyed helping to create such an impactful mascot, complete with a hidden ‘H’ in the wings.”
    • Summer School or Virtual Campus Options- Ms. Winkleman, the Director of Counseling and College and Career Readiness, stated that “Summer Melt can start on June 7-July 1 to assist rising seniors or graduates in the college application process, including financial aid and TSIA2 testing for college readiness. We can alternate days for counselors to work at all 3 HS or just house at LHS during summer school, but rotate staff. AP classes cannot be offered during the summer because 3 weeks not long enough to teach the courses and the exams won’t be offered until the May of 2022; per Joy Philpott, the Director of Advanced Academics.”
    • Inviting Kyle Area Youth Council to present on IB school option- students were asked if they would be interested in hearing the leadership presentation and it was widely accepted. This resulted in inviting the KAYC to a May 6th meeting to present.
    • Students wanted to add a way for students on campus to discuss or bring up difficult topics to their peers and administration with the support of a teacher Ally at the campus level to help encourage and empower students to use their voices for social benefit and student led initiatives. An online option was discussed with plans to route the suggestions to a campus counselor to further discuss with the student.
    • New 9th grade student members will be chosen by their respective campuses and invited to attend the next meeting so that they can continue as 10th grade members in the following school year.
    Comments (-1)