For the past four years, the West Valley School Board has welcomed two student representatives, nonvoting members who let the board know what is happening in the schools. This year, the student representatives are Miranda Heid, a senior at West Valley High School and Gleb Liashedko, a junior at Spokane Valley High School.
The students applied for the positions and were accepted after interviewing with the board.
District spokeswoman Sue Shields said every year the board chooses one student from West Valley, the district’s traditional high school, and one from one of the nontraditional schools, either Dishman Hills High School or Spokane Valley.
The representatives act as liaisons between students and the board.
Monday morning, one of those representatives, Heid, visited leadership students at Centennial Middle School.
It was the first time she had been to the school. She came to West Valley High School after attending St. John Vianney.
“I came from a school with eighth-graders and kindergartners and that was like, 150 kids,” she told the leadership students, amazed that Centennial was so large, with about 630 students.
She asked the students questions about their leadership team. They plan assemblies and Falcon Recognition awards, which Heid was curious about.
“They are for students who need to be recognized,” said eighth-grader Josie Engeland.
Sahkora George, an eighth-grader, told Heid about the school’s spirit week that raises money for a local charity.
“We raised money for Toys for Tots,” added eighth-grader Kelsie Sinclair. During spirit week activities, the school raised $2,047, which they awarded to the toy program last month.
Heid said she thought serving on the board would be a great opportunity for her future. She is applying for colleges and thought this would be something that would give her a leg up, since she is the only student at the school involved in something like this.
“It would give me a lot of leadership opportunities in the future,” she said.
She wasn’t quite sure what to expect when she first arrived for a meeting.
“I thought it would be sterile and formal,” she said, but found that wasn’t the case. During one meeting, she wasn’t feeling well, and Superintendent Gene Sementi stopped everything to check on her and make sure she made it home safely.
The visit to Centennial was her first to any of the schools in the district. During the beginning of the year, she was settling in to the position and is looking forward to future visits.
It’s not just the business meetings she attends. She said she has been to several work sessions and went to the Washington State School Directors Association meetings, which included a session for student representatives.
“I just really love how welcomed I feel,” she said.