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Student Leadership in Focus
Ryan Boccuzzi, Upper School Director

Opportunities for student leadership come in many developmentally-appropriate forms at Brentwood. In the Upper School, some students assume an established role in their performing arts group or on a team. Others may find that the service organization with which they have regularly volunteered provides them with a position of greater responsibility. Even more students will find a chance to lead in the classroom, taking the initiative to shape their own learning and that of their peers by showing their desire to further explore the material discussed in class.

This is the time of year when many of our affinity groups, school-wide publications, clubs, and activities are selecting next year's leaders, and no group does this on a more public stage than student government.Last week the Upper School elected our Prefects for the 2019-2020 school year and this week we elected class officers.

While there are many members of student government who work hard throughout the year, the senior Prefects lead this group and serve as ambassadors for the school in many capacities. Their campaign process is a rigorous one. Beginning in February, students complete a multi-step application process, which includes a Prefect candidacy project to improve the school. As we return from Spring Break, every candidate delivers a three-minute speech to the student body. Two days later, they address the student body again in a "town hall" format, answering questions on topics ranging from how to improve school functions to what it means to be a good role model.

I've watched the process for the past four years and I'm always astounded by the courage and vulnerability it takes for our students to run for any of our elected offices. All of the candidates share one sentiment regardless of their platform: they want to create an even better experience for themselves and their peers. They care deeply about their education and their experience at Brentwood.

We are thrilled to welcome our newly-elected members of student government, and whether your child will serve as a Prefect or will join a new club in the fall, we look forward to helping them find a way to engage with the community in a meaningful way. We still have a little over a month to go this year, but sometimes it's fun to look ahead!


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