SEF seeks student member

Published 9:39 pm Monday, May 17, 2021

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Suffolk Public School students have a new opportunity to be represented by a peer.

The Suffolk Education Foundation is taking applications for a student member of its board of directors for the 2021-22 school year. The Foundation hopes that this different voice can add insight to the board to help as it serves Suffolk Public Schools as a whole.

“This is something new we’re trying,” said Patrick Belcher, the SEF president. “Like many organizations, we have conversations about diversity, equality and inclusion. It was sort of an ah-ha moment that we don’t have a voice for all groups we’re serving.”

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Candidates for the board will need to be a rising junior or senior in one of Suffolk’s public high schools. The student must not have any disciplinary actions in the current school year and have a 3.0 or higher GPA. The student also must be of good character that can be attested to by a member of the community and a member of the school.

This appointment to the board will be for one year starting July 1. If a rising junior receives the position, a one-year renewal can be discussed but is not guaranteed. Candidates must desire to speak on behalf of their peers and provide insight on how SEF can better serve its students. The student will not have voting power on the board but can give an opinion on what is voted on. SEF duties might take up to four hours a month, and the selected student representative will receive community service credit.

“I hope students see this as an opportunity to impact the school system,” Belcher said. “What the Foundation is about is serving students, faculty and staff of Suffolk Public Schools. This is an opportunity to be a voice for their peers and make an impact. It’s like Thanksgiving dinner when you finally move from the kids’ table to the adult table and can take part in a different discussion.”

Applications are due no later than Wednesday, May 26. The Foundation will contact a short list of candidates for an interview via Zoom. To apply, visit