Georgia School Superintendent Richard Woods recently announced that Eastside High School sophomore Abigail Morgan is one of 66 high school students in the state selected to serve on his 2021-2022 Student Advisory Council. Throughout the year, the 66 student-member council will meet with Woods to discuss the impact of state policies in the classroom.
“Year after year, my Student Advisory Council is an invaluable resource as I make decisions that impact students across the state,” Woods said. “Getting to know these students and seeking their feedback and perspectives allows all of us at the Georgia Department of Education to make the best possible policy choices.”
“I’m looking forward to meeting new people as well as being able to get my voice heard,” said Morgan. “It’s a big honor and I didn’t really expect it. I didn’t realize how many people had applied for it. With only 66 out of 1,000 chosen, it’s a much bigger deal than I thought it was.”
Morgan stated that she hoped to get her concerns about lack of internet coverage for all students heard at the state level to hopefully effect a change.
“We live in a 90-family neighborhood near Mansfield, but we don’t have any internet access so my parents have to pay so much money for us to have not very good internet,” Morgan explained. “I was hoping by doing this I could get that to people who make a difference and hopefully put in an infrastructure to we can have internet like everyone else.”
Her first meeting with the council, which includes representation from all regions of the state, will be on Oct. 19. Members of the council were selected from a pool of more than 1,000 applicants who applied to serve on the council; this year, students in grades 10-12 were eligible to apply. Applications were reviewed and scored by a panel of GaDOE staff members, and students were chosen based on the strength of their essay answers, which focused on their ideas for public education.
Although she’s only a sophomore, Morgan is already making big plans for the future. She knows she wants to be a high school teacher —possibly math or history — and she’d like to go out-of-state for college. In fact, she’s visiting several out-of-state colleges and universities during Fall Break so she can make her final selection.
“Abigail is a poised and dedicated student who will represent our school, school system, and region with excellence as she convenes with Superintendent Woods,” said Jeff Cher, principal of Eastside High School.
“I am so proud that Abigail was selected to participate in the State School Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council,” said Samantha Fuhrey, superintendent of Newton County Schools. “I strongly believe that students’ perspectives are incredibly important in the education process. In fact, I have my own Student Advisory Council to solicit input and feedback regarding policies and procedures that have a direct impact on our students. My council has been immensely informative, and I know Superintendent Woods will appreciate hearing directly from students like Abigail as he makes his own plans and decisions throughout the course of this school year. I am confident that Abigail will represent us well at the state level, and I look forward to hearing about her experience.”