Students at Odessa Public School are holding regular town hall meetings to ensure student voice is included in shaping the overall school climate and culture.
The town halls, which are held every other month, feature topics of interest to students. Classes hold meetings to discuss what is going well at Odessa and what they would like to see improved.
Two representatives from each class then join Principal Darren Seymour and Vice-Principal Martha Duncan for a whole school Town Hall meeting. The representatives share their ideas with the group and patterns emerge. The students made categories out of their thoughts and came up with headings to make the results easier to read.
Recent results suggested that younger students were feeling scared of older students. They were afraid to talk to them and were afraid they would swear or fight with each other. The staff met and reviewed these results and decided to start a Clan system.
The school’s new Clan system started in January 2019. The school was divided into mixed groupings and created create a Clan name, flag and cheer! Grade 6, 7 and 8 students received leadership training to form the Clan leadership team
The school will then host various Clan challenges and fun activities throughout the year. The aim is that by mixing older and younger students, the older students get a chance to be leaders and younger students will build a more familiar rapport with their peers. It’s a great opportunity for everyone to get to know each other. The students and staff believe that if we know each other, we will be kinder and more understanding when we interact.
Results from the town halls are posted on the bulletin board displayed in the school’s front foyer.