Council During COVID- What’s Changed?


(Artwork/Ava Fong’23)

Navaneeth Rajan, Online Features Editor

Every year, some of the school’s most passionate and well-beloved students are elected by their peers to help lead the high school. Student Council has always been a major part of PDS life, organizing fundraisers, events, and movie nights. So, while this year has posed a major logistical challenge for everyone involved, Council has shown that they’re committed to making the most of it.

Over the past few weeks, Student Council has worked to try and make do with the lack of physical interaction that enabled some of their successes last year, such as the Carnation Sale and Jeopardy Night. While a significant amount of their focus still lies on fundraising and activity planning, as is evident by the upcoming sophomore movie night, there’s also been a larger shift towards bureaucracy as the pandemic puts a greater weight on the council’s shoulders. Of the many plans currently in the student council pipeline, some include increasing the amount of indoor seating space available and making the Shepherd Hallway a 2-way crossing. As Student Council President senior Alex Hollander states, “we have a lot of proposals in progress… we will vote on one or two of them on [Feb 4].” She continues, “some of the proposals we’re working on have to do with seating throughout the school… we have some other things in the works as well.” Of course, the council’s current motions to slightly loosen coronavirus precautions still need to be approved by the acting Head of the Upper School, Mr. Rhodes, after they’re voted on.

Furthermore, as Student Council’s job becomes more significant due to the strain COVID-19 has placed on the school, Council has begun work on more lasting changes to school life. According to Secretary-Treasurer Will Sedgely, “Right now, student council is working on two proposals; teacher awards, and the letter to new officers proposal.” The former would be a way to show appreciation for teachers and faculty, whereas the latter sets out to be a system of letters that would inform newly elected council members of their responsibilities. 

One thing is certain, though. For all of the limitations and setbacks the council has had to endure throughout this year, they’re still dedicated to making the best possible year they can. So, with the second half of the year having only just begun, there’s a lot more to come!