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DHS students share their perspectives

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Photo by Kaylee Dunham Ana Jurca asked students in her group to write their individual responses down on sticky notes.

In order to gain more understanding and connection to students, the Delta County School District asked each school within the county to hold a meeting with a variety of approximately 35 students to assess the wants and needs of the student body. The Delta High School Student Council and the Student Advisory Board headed up this project for Delta High School.

On Tuesday, Feb. 5, Delta County School District representatives, some faculty and one student from each advisory class met in the Delta High School gym. After a brief ice breaker game, the students were asked to break up into four groups. Each group had different questions. The questions were designed to gain insight into the student perspective of Delta County.

Station one, led by Lauren Davey, discussed things that students were proud of, in their school and community, as well as small acts of kindness seen in action from the teachers and administration by students.

The group felt students as a whole are proud of the community involvement with the school. They also expressed gratitude toward having a great support system in and out of the school.

As far as small acts of kindness, Lauren said "they really noticed that the teachers take time out of their day to really check in with students and build those personal relationships."

Group two, led by Claire Corbasson and Caleb Frazier, answered four questions.

Claire summed up the answers to two of the questions: What makes you excited to come to school? What makes a great community?

"The teachers here are very supportive. Students from larger city's have moved to Delta and say it's amazing to see how much the teachers care about you and take the time to learn your name and you get that one-on-one connection... As for our community, it is nice because it is small and safe, everyone knows each other and they are very supportive," Claire said.

Caleb summarized the answers they received to the questions, "If you were to return to Delta County, as an adult, what would you like to see in your school and community? What classes/programs/sports would you like to change or add to the school district?"

He said, "We want a school library... We would really like to see that aspect added back into our education. We like to see more outside SAT and ACT preparation for students. We would also like to see community building events, more things like Deltarado Days and more community unity."

Ana Jurca, leader of the third group, presented the statements given to her on the topic of learning styles, self worth and preparation for the future.

Her group discussed the benefits of hands-on learning. The students felt like they are given the opportunity to learn by doing hands-on projects and also by being given the opportunity to learn visually.

When asked the questions "What can our school do to help all students feel valued and have self-worth? In what ways can the adults contribute?" Ana's group said that because of the small school size, teachers are able to get to know the students on a personal level, although there is some favoritism that attributes to feeling of negative self-worth.

The final question asked to Ana's group was, "Is there something our schools can do to better prepare you for your future?"

Ana reported that the students said the concurrent enrollment classes are really good, as well as the AP (Advanced Placement) classes, because they prepare students better for college. They also talked about how they wanted a little bit more ACT and SAT preparation.

For other students not on the course for college, Ana's group wanted to see more classes for those interested in going into the career field or for those going into the Army.

The final group, led by Tyler Neil, answered the questions, "What is your favorite memory from school? How can your peers, teachers, and administrators help advocate for and build positive relationships with students in order to effectively address concerns? What are good things our school does? What are some things that need to change?"

The students' favorite memory many times had to do with field trips and learning outside of a classroom.

In response to the second question, Neil said, "a lot of the answers we were getting were actually around teachers, and how they help students by checking up on them every day. If they see you having a rough day, they may not know you, but they will come and check on you and make sure you are doing okay."

Lastly, the students felt supported by the school in different ways, through clubs, when faculty offers help or guidance, and finally when the school recognizes students.

The main problem that students would like to see changed within Delta High School is a better punishment system for ill-advised behavior.

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