The Council works hard year-round to achieve the goal of providing the Durango High School Student body with fun and diverse events, representation of student voice, and developing their personal leadership. The Student Council of Excellence presentation is a showcase of what they’ve accomplished this year to that end. Advisor Dale Garland explains that by working towards this award, the DHS Student Council does far more than traditional student council activities like putting on Homecoming and Prom.
There are more than 60 indicators that must be met to earn this award. At each station of the presentation, a student council member explains the indicator and shows what the council members did to accomplish it. The examples run the gamut: First Fridays, an in-school event to welcome new students, and help them get settled into DHS life; an animal toy drive to give comfort to the animals awaiting adoption at Parker’s Animal Rescue; gathering Homecoming dresses for students who can’t afford one; a holiday toy drive for underprivileged children in Durango; and presentations to the Durango City Council and other community organizations.
Along the way, council members learn fundamentals that will serve them well in life: operating business meetings, parliamentary procedure, community service, leadership, finance and budgeting, public speaking, and interacting professionally with adults and business people.
Principal Jon Hoerl graded each indicator and presentation, to submit to the national organization. At each station he found presenters who were engaged, knowledgeable, articulate, and professional.
Asked if working towards this award added pressure to the Council, member Emy Mattox said that rather than create pressure, it gives the council a framework to plan the year and the events they want to undertake. Contributing successfully to the school and community is their goal, earning the award is a bonus.DHS is one of about 250 schools to earn this award, out of more than 26,000 high schools across the country. This year's Award winners will be announced in March.