Student Government Requirements

by Penny Zheng, Reporter

According to the widely read student-parent handbook that JBS issues to each student at the beginning of the year, “Activities are an important part of the Burroughs experience.” Of course, student government falls under this category. In order to allow students, as written in the handbook, “to participate to the fullest extent possible in those [activities] that interest them.”
Burroughs should not implement additional requirements for class and school elections other than those mandated by the school handbook.

To hold class or school-wide office at Burroughs, one not only needs to be an upstanding citizen but also in good academic standing as well. That is, potential candidates may not be on disciplinary or academic probation. With these school rules already in place, imposing additional requirements (academic, social, previous leadership experiences or otherwise) would only further restrict these positions from talented members of the student body.

When asked how he felt about having minimum standards for holding class office, newly elected junior vice-president, Liam Johnson ‘20, replies, “I don’t think there should be one. I think everyone should be able to run for class office.” This statement embodies the essence of Burroughs.

We are a diverse group of individuals that derive our strength from the differences and talents each and every one of us brings to the community.

By allowing the maximum number of people to run for class office, we offer ourselves the greatest variety of candidates. Furthermore, just the process to even becoming potential candidate weeds out those who lack dedication and commitment.

So far, our community has done a fine job of selecting its student government officers without any additional requirements.
Take, for example, the class elections for the Class of 2020. The class president holds immense power in their class. However, with great power comes great responsibility. For example, they are required to be present at Congress bright and early every Wednesday morning at 7:30 am to represent the interests of their class.

For their upcoming junior year, a year where its class officers not only hold the responsibility of improving their class but also play a key role in the planning of a paramount event in our young lives (prom), the current sophomore class has selected a responsible, conscientious, and dedicated young leader named Loch Dean to serve as president.

Like Johnson, Dean also believes student government positions should be open to as many people as possible. He is very enthusiastic about serving as the junior class president for the upcoming school year, and believes that “a good class officer should be able to talk to people and have good ideas on how to make the class better and more efficient.”

While Dean admits to attending neither of the two Congress meetings that have been held during his presidency, he attributed his absence to unintentional misunderstandings. Yet he has large goals as the president; he wants to make his class “the best in JBS history” and hopes for “world domination.” Jokes aside, Dean seeks to embrace the duties of student government.

Any additional requirements of potential candidates other than those already stated in the Burroughs handbook are unnecessary. It is evident that the rigors associated with holding a position within the student government alone are enough to weed out all but the best and most dedicated members set on improving their class.