• 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:

Student Members

  • 2023-2024 Members  

    Representing Hays, Johnson, and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, are:  Abram Garza, Adah Guerra, Adrian McWilliams, Alyssa Jones, Ana Jakubauskas, Ayana Green, Barron Liu, Carlos Lujan, Cassidy Clark, Chase Shuda, Connor Hall, Destiny Bautista, Jackson Juel, Jacob Robison (Jace), Jeremiah Hightower-Santos, Jenee' Perez-Starling, Makynzie Gutierrez, Markis Maldonado, Nayeli Munoz, Paul Garza Jr., Raneen Omar, Ryan Roberts, Ryan Weeks, Taryn Beacom, William Keller, Yunis Al-Saad, Zaniah Hoskins. 

    2022-2023 Members  
    group photo

    Representing Hays, Johnson, and Lehman High Schools, and Live Oak Academy, are:  Abram Garza, Makayla White, Yunis Al-Saad, Jeremiah Hightower-Santos, Cassidy Clark, Ava Bedwell, Krystal Cortez, Dre Giello, Giovanni Lleverino,  Zaniah Hoskins, James (Trace) Jansen, Nayeli Munoz, Jordan Harding, Vivian-An, Nguyen, Jenee' Perez-Starling, Raneen Oma, Markis Maldonado, Ryan Weeks, Alyssa Jones, Halie DeLeon, Ikaika Engleman, Ava Scheibmeir, Alexis Venditelli, Lilyana Ortiz-Pattridge, Scott Alfaro and Lauren Johnson

    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
    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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  • March 7, 2024

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 3/7/2024

    Good Things & Welcome:
    The meeting began with a warm welcome extended by the Hays CISD Board and Superintendent to the Student Advisory Panel. Members shared positive updates about "good things" happening in their lives.

    New Student Introductions:

    Bryce Clore and Sofia Landaverde were welcomed as new students to the panel.

    Introduction of New Volunteer Coordinator:

    Elizabeth Bracamontes was introduced as the new Volunteer Coordinator. High school volunteer hour requirements and details as to when the clock starts for recording hours were asked. Future meeting to decide details was made.

    Evaluation of Fighting Fentanyl Campaign:

    • Discussion centered around evaluating the effectiveness of the ongoing fighting fentanyl campaign.
    • Identified aspects that are working well and areas that require adjustments.
    • Potential UIL Playoff Restructure:
      Deliberation on the possibility of restructuring UIL playoffs. Further examination needed to determine the feasibility and potential impact of any restructuring.

    Testing Fatigue:

    • Addressed concerns regarding testing fatigue among students.
    • Strategies to mitigate testing fatigue were discussed.


    The next meeting will be a tour of the New Cullen Elementary on April 3rd, 2024. Participants are reminded that closed-toed shoes are required for the tour.

    Comments (-1)
  • February 7, 2024

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 2/7/2024

    Welcome and Introductions:
    The meeting commenced with a warm welcome from the Hays CISD Board and Superintendent to the Student Advisory Panel. "Good things" happening in members' lives were shared. 

    Student Dress Code:

    • Clarify the rationale behind the dress code – is it primarily for maintaining professionalism, ensuring safety, or fostering a conducive learning environment?
    • Address the specific issue of hats within the dress code. Discuss the reasons behind any existing regulations regarding hats and whether there's a need for adjustments.

    Recent Demographer’s Information:

    • Provided a link to the demographer’s information for review.
    • Future campus location options
    • Expected growth projections

    Physical Safety:

    • Discussed campus security measures.
    • Reviewed emergency response protocols.
    • Discussed ongoing infrastructure improvements.

    Mental Health and Well-being:

    • Reviewed support services available for students.
    • Discussed initiatives promoting mental health awareness.
    • Shared strategies for stress management.

    Next Meeting: Scheduled for March 7th, 2024, at the Kyle Kimbro room.

    Comments (-1)
  • January 11, 2024

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 1/11/2024

    Welcome and Introductions:
    The meeting commenced with a warm welcome from the Hays CISD Board and Superintendent to the Student Advisory Panel. "Good things" happening in members' lives were shared. 

    • Presentation on the process of creating academic calendars for the academic years 2024/2025 and 2025/2026. Solicited feedback from students regarding the proposed calendars.
    • Security Kiosks
    • Discussion on the implementation of security kiosks across the campus.
    • Presentation of plans, if any, related to security kiosks.
    • Open discussion - Questions or comments from students

    Students were given the opportunity to voice any questions, concerns, or comments on topics outside the agenda.

    Next Meeting

    Scheduled the next meeting for February 7, 2024 (Thursday) at the Performing Arts Center.

    Meeting Summary:

    • The meeting commenced with a presentation on the process of creating academic calendars for the academic years 2024/2025 and 2025/2026. The presentation covered the factors considered in the creation of the calendars and invited feedback from students regarding the proposed schedules.
    • Following that, there was a discussion regarding the implementation of security kiosks across the campus. Plans related to security kiosks were presented, and attendees were encouraged to share their thoughts and suggestions on the matter.
    • An open discussion was held, allowing students to voice any questions, comments, or concerns they had on topics not included in the agenda.
    • The meeting concluded with the scheduling of the next meeting, set for February 7, 2024 (Thursday) at the Performing Arts Center.

    Action Items:

    • Gather and analyze feedback from students regarding the proposed academic calendars.
    • Further evaluate plans for the implementation of security kiosks based on the discussion and feedback received.
    • Prepare agenda items for the next meeting, incorporating any relevant topics raised during the open discussion.
    Comments (-1)
  • December 7, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 12/7/2023

    Welcome and Introductions:
    The meeting commenced with a warm welcome from the Hays CISD Board and Superintendent to the Student Advisory Panel. "Good things" happening in members' lives were shared. 

    "Go-To" Academic Advisor:

      • Students discussed their experiences with adult employees at the middle school and high school levels who have been their "go-to" academic advisors.
      • Emphasis was placed on the importance of mentorship and support in academic matters.

     Most Influential High School Teacher:

      • Students shared their thoughts on the high school teacher who had the greatest influence on them, both academically and personally.
      • Reasons for influence, such as teaching style, mentorship, and personal connections, were explored.

    Holiday Wishes for Campus:

      • Each student expressed their holiday wishes for their respective campuses, fostering a sense of community and positivity.
      • Ideas ranged from academic improvements to creating a more inclusive and supportive school environment. Students were hopeful for construction to be completed on their campuses.

    Open Discussion: Questions or Comments from Students:

      • Students were asked to share any additional thoughts, questions, or comments they had regarding their academic experiences, school environment, or other relevant topics.
      • The Hays CISD Board and Superintendent expressed gratitude to the Student Advisory Panel for their valuable insights and contributions.

    The meeting concluded on a positive note, with a commitment from both the students and the Hays CISD Board and Superintendent to work together to enhance the educational experience for all students in the district.

    Comments (-1)
  • November 2, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 11/5/2023

    Thanksgiving Reflections:

    • Members were invited to share what they are thankful for this Thanksgiving.
    • Emphasis on expressing gratitude for both big and small aspects of life.
    • The purpose was to foster a positive and appreciative atmosphere.

    Cell Phone Usage and Terroristic Threats:

    • Discussion regarding the current state of cell phone usage within the student body.
    • Addressing concerns related to terroristic threats and ensuring a safe environment.
    • Exploring potential strategies and measures to mitigate these issues.
    • Recognizing the importance of balancing safety with the promotion of a positive school culture.

    PALS Austin ISD:

    • Introduction to PALS (Peer Assistance Leadership and Service) program in Austin ISD.
    • Highlighting its history since its establishment at Crockett High School in 1980.
    • Discussion on the impact of PALS on empowering and mentoring students.
    • Consideration of the potential implementation or adaptation of a similar program within Hays CISD.

    Meeting Highlights:

    Thanksgiving Reflections:

    • Members expressed gratitude for diverse aspects of life, including family, education, and personal achievements.
    • Acknowledged the importance of fostering a sense of gratitude within the student body.
    • Emphasized the role of gratitude in promoting a positive school culture.
    • Cell Phone Usage and Terroristic Threats:
    • Identified the need for a comprehensive approach to address cell phone usage issues.
    • Emphasized the importance of open communication channels between students, faculty, and administration.
    • Discussed potential educational initiatives to raise awareness about the consequences of terroristic threats.
    • Consideration of implementing preventive measures and providing resources for mental health support.
    • PALS Austin ISD:
    • Members showed interest in exploring the PALS program further.
    • Discussed the potential benefits of a peer mentoring program within Hays CISD.
    • Recognized the potential positive impact on student engagement, leadership development, and overall school culture.

    Meeting concluded with a sense of gratitude and commitment to fostering a safe and positive learning environment within Hays CISD.

    Comments (-1)
  • October 5, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 10/5/2023

    October 5, 2023


    • Dr. Watson presented information about the Texas Core Curriculum, students were unaware of the college credit program options
    • Discussion of possible IB campuses for ES #16 and #17
    • Discussion of cords for graduates earning volunteer hours before it is required (starts with this year’s freshman class)
    • Discussion of Intruder Audits and Exterior Doors
    • October is Fentanyl Awareness month
      • Access to bathrooms
      • Ideas for identifying known drug dealers 
    • Mental Health: anxiety and depression among HS students
    Comments (-1)
  • September 6, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 9/6/2023


    • Welcome New Student Advisory Members
    • Beginning of the year celebrations & concerns
    • How are you handling the new changes of the school year?
    • Importance of I.D.’s and Safety Drills
    • Volunteer cords and opportunities

    1. Call to Order and Good Things:

    • The meeting began with an upbeat playlist featuring "Just the Hits" from the 80's, setting a positive tone for the meeting.

    2. Welcome by Dr. Wright: Students were welcomed and sent through a buffet line of taco plates and tres leche cakes made by Student Food Services.

    3. Beginning of the Year Celebrations and Concerns:

    • LHS Innovations and Design: Discuss plans to revamp baseball fields with soft turf.
    • The auditorium and CTE Mariachi Hall have been upgraded.
    • JHS Wing: Mention of accommodating 600 students in the orchestra hall.
    • HHS Science Labs and Weight Room renovations.
    • LOA Doubling Capacity: Plans for increasing enrollment to 400 students.
    • Concerns were raised by Jackson Juel regarding difficulties in getting to the Hays Huddle for attendance.
    • Tina Salazar emphasized the need for stronger adult-student connections.

    4. 4-Day Instruction Week:

    • It was noted that the idea was rejected by state legislation and the new calendar committee will finalize the schedule.

    5. Hays Service Stars Program:

    • Keyawyna Glaze introduced the "Hays Service Stars" program, encouraging students to log volunteer hours using their student IDs. This information will be integrated into VIP records, and counselors will have access.
    • Board Trustee Esperanza Orosco suggested students consider volunteering hours to organizations like "Hope to God" and "Clothes Closet."

    6. Funding Update:

    • Dr. Wright explained a funding challenge related to private school vouchers and anticipated special sessions by the State. Delayed funding was expected to be released in October.

    7. Art Class Fees:

    • Students inquired about a $10 fee for art classes, which was explained as typical and reasonable based on previous years.

    8. GPA and Class Ranks:

    • There was a change in the GPA scale last year for core content classes. Marivel Sedillo will provide dates for the release of updated class ranks.

    9. New Changes:

    • Board Secretary Courtney Runkle discussed new policies, including mandatory DAEP/Impact placement for vaping offenses and a stricter absence policy.
    • LOA students clarified that rumors of the school closing due to enrollment numbers were untrue.

    10. Safety and Security:

    • Chief of Safety and Security Jeri Scrocky emphasized campus safety, urging students to wear ID badges, keep doors locked, and report suspicious activity.
    • Ryan Weeks raised concerns about vaping setting off smoke detectors. Scrocky mentioned plans for a vaping detection system.
    • LHS students expressed that removing exterior bathroom doors did not reduce vaping issues.
    • Students suggested using magnets for their ID badges instead of lanyards.
    • Esperanza Orosco emphasized the importance of elementary students becoming accustomed to wearing ID badges early on.

    11. Home School Student Participation:

    • Dr. Wright asked for student opinions on home-schooled students participating in UIL activities, including sports and fine arts.
    • Students felt it was unfair that home-schooled students did not have to pass exams or coursework to qualify, unlike public school students required by UIL.
    • Concerns were raised about the lack of bonding opportunities with teammates for home-schooled students.
    • Suggestions were made for improving team sports for these students.

    The meeting concluded with a sense of collaboration and a commitment to address the discussed issues.

    Comments (-1)
  • April, 6, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Goodrich on 4/6/2023
    1. Call to Order; Good things

    Good things were mentioned by all attendees including the news that Lehman's percussion earned 2nd in the state! Welcomed new students: Liam Keller and Ana Jakubauskas

    1. SchoolLinks

    School board president Vanessa Petrea asked for student feedback on using SchoolLinks to register for classes. Students commented that the program needed to be taught to students and they felt their campus staff was not able to help them and they had to figure it out for themselves. One student noted, “It has the potential to be helpful for applying to colleges but I spent too much time having to learn it on my own.” Abram noted that registering was too buggy and not all the classes were listed. Both Live Oak students and Hays High students noted they were not familiar with the program and had not heard of it as of 4.6.23.

    1. Student IDs and consequences for non-compliance

    Students felt that non-compliance should have a 3 strikes-out policy that would step up/tiered consequences each time. Students noted they forgot their ID’s and maybe magnetic-type fasteners would be cooler than lanyards. Marcos noted that ID’s should be scanned to have bathroom privileges because it would cut down on vaping in the bathroom if the admin could tell who was in the bathroom at any time.

    1. Legislative updates pertaining to public education

    The potential 4-day week was prohibited in a new bill by Senator Campbell. Bill to decriminalize vaping by age restrictions was presented. Students noted that kids would be more likely to vape if they knew there were no legal consequences to vaping.  It was noted that 60% of impact students were in trouble for vaping on campus.

    1. What is a challenge you are facing as another school year comes to an end?

    Students are worried about senioritis and staying focused until the end of the school year. Students report feeling drained from the rigors of academics and extracurriculars by April. Students said that teachers were complaining to students about feeling burnout. Admin and students agreed that teachers should not complain to students about their jobs. Students also said they do not want teachers to be religious or anti-religious but focus on academics. Students said teachers should have more freedom to take lessons so that lessons could be more engaging, like at the beginning of the year. Members noted that their most memorable days of learning included; learning outside instead of in a classroom, having fun projects, and being able to get out of their chairs to collaborate.

    1. Ideas to consider as we plan for the 2023-2024 school year

    Students wanted fewer Google slides and computer-based learning and more teacher-student engagement. More class discussions and fewer one-sided lectures.

    1. Say Farewell to Seniors members. Seniors were asked, “What advice would you give incoming high school students?” and gave the younger class advice on having a great high school experience.
    Comments (-1)
  • March 2, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 3/2/2023
    1. Call to Order; Good things

    Good things were mentioned by attendees, including the news that Ikaika Engleman broke the school pole vault record with a vault of 12 ft!

    1. Campus Safety

    Alyssa asked for a doorbell in the HHS trainer's room to assess student athletic injuries faster. Students asked that they have access to bathrooms at the same time and location within the campuses. The administration decided that more bathroom monitor sweeps needed to be performed. Graffiti issues in the bathrooms needs to be reported and removed asap on all campuses and a work order was placed for the HHS cafeteria bathroom.

    Fentanyl assemblies were considered by students and administrators. Students felt that large school-wide assemblies were too distracting and that the messaging would be better in a small-scale environment. All agreed that an opt-out should be given to allow students with trauma or personal experience with Fentanyl the option to have additional privacy and support during the messaging campaign. Billboard for Forever 15 was approved and will hang as a banner in secondary campus cafeterias.

    1. 2023 Bond Plan & Feedback

    JHS gyms are too small to accommodate every student organization and a new gym to prioritize fine arts. Students asked where new campuses were likely to be built. Students wanted feedback about what specifics would be added to their campuses for athletics. Students asked about the details of Hays HS & Lehman HS Initial Design Fees for Future Modernization and Expansion

    1. C Day Schedule

    Students were asked their opinion about C-day schedules. Some students noted that Fridays were helpful for athletes who may miss class for games to see all their teachers twice a week and to get assignments. Students not involved in UIL thought Friday C days were too short to accomplish much in class and thought alternating AB days were a better use of time. Student-athletes said that grading guidelines were tough to adhere to when they missed too many days without seeing their teachers (missed because of events.) Students said that teachers assigned too much homework on Fridays and weekends. It was upsetting their family and social life balance.

    The meeting ran short on time with feedback for agenda items 4 and 5 will be moved to the following meeting.

    1. Time allowed for lunch
    2. Bullying Education


    Comments (-1)
  • Jan 12, 2023

    Posted by Harvest Coats on 1/13/2023

    1. Call to Order; Good things

    Good things mentioned included power lifting competition season had started.  Students had enjoyed spending time with their families over the holiday break.

    2. Attendance Numbers/ Absenteeism

    Attendance rose from 92% to 93%.  Dr. Wright spoke to the students about pushing the legislature to base school funding on enrollment instead of daily attendance. 

    3. Schoology was discussed with several students saying that Google classroom was more intuitive and compatible with Google documents than Schoology.

    Students were asked how many used the district supplied technology and computers. Many students said that they used their own computers but wanted the option of district provided lender computers to remain for students that can not afford to have individual computers, especially for students with multiple siblings. 

    4. 4-Day School Week Options Discussed

    Students were asked their opinion about a 4-day school week. Many students noted that they would have to care for younger siblings on their "day off." Others noted that athletes and UIL competitions would still occur on Fridays for many students and were worried they would not have bus service to get to school for athletics.  


    Comments (-1)