Oregon Student Voice: New Beginnings | Chalkboard Project

Oregon Student Voice: New Beginnings

Thursday, January 3, 2019 Samantha Holquist Image of two members of Oregon Student Voice posing with Oregon Governor Brown

In the past year Oregon Student Voice published 15 opinion pieces about education issues in Oregon, released our first comprehensive report on the state of Oregon schools from the student perspective and hosted 100+ students at a youth empowerment rally in Salem. These are impressive accomplishments, but the biggest challenge has just begun. After operating as an initiative of Chalkboard Project for two years, we are becoming an independent youth-led nonprofit. We think this is important because youth know what they need to succeed both inside and outside the classroom; however, they are often not provided opportunities or space to initiate their ideas. By providing youth with increased opportunities to strategically plan and guide activities, we will be more effective at fulfilling our vision of supporting all students in becoming authentic partners with other education stakeholders.

2019 will be a critical time for Oregon Student Voice members as they continue to establish themselves as a key stakeholder in Oregon’s K-12 education decision making, develop deeper relationships with community partners, strengthen their commitment to serving underrepresented communities, and secure funding to support more students through our work. I look forward to supporting the students as they make the transition to becoming a nonprofit. I hope that their one-of-a-kind statewide model will serve as an example for other states striving to raise student voice and engagement in decision making.

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