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Casper Enjoys Role As Student Representative to BOE

Several years ago, the Marion Central School District Board of Education discussed adding a student representative as an ex officio, non-voting member to the Board to help provide student input.

Then, the COVID-19 pandemic hit and the discussion was put on hold for a couple of years. The conversation resumed last school year after a community member reached out and a proposal was put on the May ballot.

Voters approved the measure 231-45 and senior Joseph Casper attended his first meeting as the Board’s student rep in October.

Casper, who is Student Council President at Marion Junior-Senior High School, was approached by MJSHS Principal Shane Dehn in the fall and asked if he would consider being the student representative.

He accepted.

“It has been fun and it has been educational,” Casper said, “especially the first meeting of the month when there are presentations. I listen to everything that is said and I think about things later.”

The Board appreciates having Casper.

“The BOE sees this role as a connection to the student body,” Board President Rob Marshall said. “All of our decisions impact the students in our school. Allowing them to have a voice in the process brings a very important voice to the discussion.”

Casper participates in meetings by sharing updates on student activities and providing input when asked. He has not shared his thoughts on any big issues yet, but said that he will if needed.

“If a situation came up where I felt that I needed to say something, I would,” he said. “I think that the Board would take my thoughts into consideration because all of their decisions affect students.”

In addition to providing a voice, Casper is also carrying on a family tradition. His father, Adam, served as a student rep when he was in high school.

Dehn said that he has been impressed with Casper’s participation.

“As the Student Council President, Joe actively looks for opportunities to improve the school community and takes action to bring those improvements to life,” Dehn said. “Joe is calm, confident, and objective.  He is well-respected by staff and students alike and brings a logical student perspective to the Board of Education.” 

Marshall said the Board looks forward to continuing to work with Casper and future student reps “to further develop the relationship between the students and the board.”