Louis Ades

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What would you have implemented in your high school if you were the leader of the Student Government Organization?

Please be practical. I am looking for ideas to propose to the administration at my school and I have to get them to approve it for it to actually happen. I want to do something that's not only fun, but also meaningful, life-changing, inspiring, etc.

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    Nov 27 2012: There's a school my nephews in Scotland go to which uses the first years to work out a persons strengths and weaknesses and then encourages them to work on their strength to get specialized skills. Its worked very well and there is also very little bullying etc in that school. I like that.
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    Nov 27 2012: Louis, There are thousands of good opportunities available through the disaster Sandy left behind in your area. I am sure that some of your classmates are going through tough times and they and their families would really aoppreciate some help.

    There are other things that your class could start as a legacy.

    Have qualified persons give life saving techniques such as CPR to all the classes so that Brooklyn, NY would be the best place in the world to get immediate attention if you were to have heart trouble there.

    Start a senior tutoring club ... get a teacher to sponsor a lunch time club to help in all subjects.

    Organize a lunchtime Toastmasters club.

    Develop a school chapter of big brothers / sisters.

    Organize a student choir that travels to old folks homes, hospitals, malls, to spred the joy of music.

    Host a fund raiser that would annually provide a donation to the class funds / charities / ect ...

    Do a Christmas angel tree. Have classmates nominate families for special angel help for a better holiday.

    Develop a first responder team for emergencies at your school under the supervision of the school nurse, maintenance supervisor, and security personnel.

    Most of these involve the school and the community and could be continued to the mutual benefit of everyone.

    Awsome could be one time or to have your school known as the awsome students who provide community service and service to others .... now THAT would be awsome.

    Just some thoughts.

    All the best. Bob.
  • Nov 26 2012: When I was in high school, the only thing i expected the student council to do was to curb bullying.

    See if you can work on the idea, and develop a model to protect students in your school.
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      Nov 26 2012: We've actually works on that already. Thanks for the suggestion though!

      I'm talking about a one time event that can be awesome. I.e. a 5k marathon for charity.
  • Nov 26 2012: College prep club is a school group that is useful and always in high demand. Invite college scouts, professors, and local business member to discuss useful tips for college and community activities. Participate in SAT/ ACT prep for the student body and help to develop or establish goals. Scholarship searches and essay ideas can be introduced in this club and you can have a group willing to read your letters sent to colleges for peer review. Also colleges are looking for students who are innovative and community minded this group can also act to help add to the appeal of your group members through unique community based actions such as volunteering. That way you can have your cake and eat it too a rare instance of a win-win.
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    Lejan .

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    Nov 26 2012: 'As a leader of the student government organization' isn't it on you to think of 'the most amazing idea to implement in 'your' high school.'?

    Otherwise, what qualifies you for this position?

    The world is full of inspiration for practical, meaningful and life-changing ideas and it is you who know's about the specifics and needs of your school. Your sources are your fellow students! Talk with them, discuss with them, argue with them! Have meetings, have debates! This process will be helpful to you to find what you are looking for. It will be 'home brewed' and therefore the best possible match to your high school.

    No idea comes without a process.

    Back in the days I was the students representative of my high school and fighting for administration approval was part of the job all the time. I could not have done it without the help, inspiration and support of the majority of the students and in many cases we succeeded. And if we didn't we took it for a reason to have another 'grief party' ... ;o)

    In any case, good luck!
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      Nov 26 2012: Although I agree with what you're saying, I think most leaders assemble their team of experts around them, such as the President's cabinet. So I'm just saying the leader doesn't necessarily have to come up with the amazing idea themselves - they have to be able to find it, champion it, and bring it to fruition which is still quite a challenge in itself.
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        Nov 26 2012: I agree with you half/half, as a good leader to me is someone who knows the subject he/she is leading and not just acts like a 'puppet' of other peoples opinions and 'mainstream' thoughts.

        That's why I think a 'generalist' should be in lead on manifold issues, and a 'specialist' on his subject.

        I have seen business leaders running and ruin companies without knowing anything more about their 'products' as shown in their high-gloss brochures and I do not endorse this concept of exchangeability. Today they sell cola, tomorrow they sell cars... :o)

        Good leaders are inspiring and able to listen.
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    Nov 26 2012: Institute a program designed to motivate and encourage young people to find and solve problems. The core idea is to help students see that it is OK to take a risk in the pursuit of advancement. Many students feel disfranchised and do not believe they have the power to make a difference. Provide guidelines for researching, choosing, and implementing very specific areas for improvement. The idea here is to combat the prevailing concept that "You Can Do It" is not really true. Trying is what matters. Learn from "failures" and take the experience on to the next challenge. Never stop trying.
  • Dec 2 2012: They have a program where I live in which a child with special needs is mentored in school by a child without special needs. The special needs child learns to model his or her behavior in order to be more social and gain friends and the mentor learns empathy and compassion. It is a win win
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    Nov 29 2012: I don't know anything about your situation, what you've got and haven't and so on... but... in my municipality we have the "One laptop per child" project, it's very appreciated, sadly it was very costly here because my government has bad rules on who gets to sell stuff to us...

    But Nicholas Negroponte's idea is quite cost effective and does a lot of good in the world... might be worth looking at if you haven't got it already...
    http://www.ted.com/talks/nicholas_negroponte_on_one_laptop_per_child.html
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    Nov 29 2012: Could you host a TEDx?
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    Nov 28 2012: I tell the following is an alternative history that never was (or "what I would have implemented in high school if I was leader of the student government")

    It was 1979, and I was leader of the student government organization in my home town of Hamden, Connecticut. When the white vs black racial riots were causing violent crimes in our school, I stepped up and got black and white families to swap children for a whole week - to live a week in the other's families shoes. What a difference that made. We were featured on the cover of time magazine for our high school race riots.

    Actually that last sentence is true - we really were featured on the cover for our race riots. Our gym teacher happened to be the former Mr. Universe, and he literally held the white and black gang leaders up by the scruffs of their necks to break up a fight.

    That may make no sense for you at all to do. You have to take a look at what's going on right now in your school and form a vision of something better - collect supporters, and put that into action.
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    Nov 26 2012: Like Edward already said, I wouldnt be too aware of the circumstances in your school but I would start up interventions that motivate young people especially developing intrinsic motivation to provide solutions to problems facing young people in your area. I may be saying that because I feel it is what I missed at that stage.....
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    Nov 26 2012: I think Lejan put it well below this comment. What are the unique issues and needs of your school and fellow students? Would you be able to reply to this message with 1-3 of your fellow students' top issues? Is there too much bullying? Gang violence? Not enough access to online resources? Is privacy at school an issue? Lunch food taste like cardboard? Or are students just too apathetic?
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    Nov 26 2012: A school TEDx event: there would be days when TED talks can be shown, and after it students would gather in small groups, with muffins tea and coffee, to debate and discuss.
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      Nov 26 2012: I actually think this should be done in all classes already. Shouldn't be an extra, it should be part of the teachers' curriculum.
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      Nov 29 2012: A TEDxYouth event is a great idea.
      You might be able to visit the TED offices in New York City when applying for the license. But the key for making this a wonderful and meaningful event will be to seek out and find speakers that can reach the students in your school with new ideas that can inspire. Involve the hold student body in the seek because inspiring stories are everywhere; a neighbor, a friend of a dad. Develop a theme for the event from a discussion about TED and what"Ideas With Spreading" means. Get teachers on board with using Ted talks that apply to their lessons. Make it the season of TED and not just a single day of presentations.

      Think BIG! Maybe some in this TED community will help you.
  • Nov 26 2012: Hi Louis, I'd encourage you to consider helping put together an internship or job-placement (assistance) program for your upperclassmen. If done with the help of the guidance counselors, this will help your classmates figure out what they want to do in life, or at least get a little cash in their pockets. Or if you're really ambitious, set up a series of college recruitment days where those that want to scout out schools do so as a group on weekends. But as a fellow Brooklynite, I'd say real leadership at your level would constitute finding and forming a "sister school" relationship with one of the Staten Island, Coney Island, or Far Rockaway, or Long Island (particularly Long Beach) schools whose students' families were hit hard and do a one-to-one reach-out. Its not embarrassing to borrow clothes from a friend when yours are still in a condemned house that you can't go into. Help the schools link up and make new friends!
  • Nov 26 2012: What do you have in mind?

    For me, performing in a highschool chorus team was so wonderful.
    But it depends on what you aim for.
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    Nov 26 2012: I do not mean to break your spirit but people, in their generality, do not really expect AMAZING stuff from their government (no matter school or national). If you really want to be appreciated and rank among the best leaders of all times simply focus on the FREE and BASIC stuff. I do not want to say free lunch but on the second thought...
    • Nov 26 2012: Your point is well understood. But maybe, just maybe, there's a chance to spark an inspirational moment if an idea is sold the right way! Otherwise, free pizza...it could be worse;)