Seattle Public Schools

1250 School Board Student Members

The Seattle School Board believes students possess valuable insight and should have a paramount voice in the education received from the district and in the decisions made by the Board. Inspired by the Angela Davis quote that “Walls turned sideways are bridges,” the Board recognizes the organizational structure of the district can create a wall between decision makers and the students the district serves. To address this and cultivate active communication and cooperative relationships with students in the decision-making of the district, the Board will annually seat School Board Student Members to represent student voice in Board work. School Board Student Members will contribute to Board discussion by providing student insight and perspective, advocating their positions on district issues or needs, and serving as a liaison between the Board and students. School Board Student Members will not attend executive sessions or closed sessions, make or second motions, vote, or hold Board offices.

Number of Positions

The Board will select three, five, or seven School Board Student Members each year. The Board seeks to reflect district’s impressive diversity through student selection and holds the ultimate goal that selected students have a meaningful impact on the work of the Board. The number of student positions will be evaluated by the Board annually to determine the number of School Board Student Members most conducive to achieving these goals.

Selection Process

The Board will select the School Board Student Members each year at a public meeting held in the spring, and the students selected will serve the following school year. Eligible students will be required to submit an application and personal statement to apply. The selection process will include input from a diverse range of community members and groups that, as a whole, are representative of, and include, the students of the district.    

Term of Office Each School Board Student Member will serve a one-year term beginning August 1 and concluding July 31. Students may apply to serve a second term if desired, if

still enrolled in Seattle Public Schools. After new School Board Student Members are selected, they will receive an orientation provided by the Superintendent or their designee, a Board director, and the staff person assigned to oversee the School Board Student Members.


Applicants must be Seattle Public Schools students entering their junior or senior year of high school at the time of selection and continue to be enrolled in Seattle Public Schools for the duration of their term. Exception will be made for students graduating at the end of the school year during which they served as a School Board Student Member, so they may complete the final months of their term. School Board Student Members should reflect the impressive diversity of the district and represent a variety of interests, perspectives, and backgrounds. School Board Student Members should also possess an awareness of challenges and barriers that they or others experience in education and in society. Additional qualifications may be required in an accompanying procedure and/or application.


  • School Board Student Members:
    School Board Student Members will attend the regular meetings of the Board in rotation such that individual Student Members are not required to attend every regular meeting. Student Member comments will be a standing regular meeting agenda item providing opportunity for members to report on their work, including the work of their committees, if assigned; offer their opinions on the motions and resolutions before the Board; and communicate other topics of student interest or concern.

    The Board President will determine committee assignments based on individual student interest and availability per Board Policy No. 1240, Committees. School Board Student Members are encouraged to attend Board work sessions and other special meetings of the Board. School Board Student Members will participate in discussions and are welcome to question and communicate their opinions, suggestions, and concerns.

    School Board Student Members will have access to all assigned Board committee, work session, and regular meeting agendas, materials, and minutes to review in preparation for their attendance and participation. 
  • School Board Directors:

    Each Student Member will be paired with a Board Director mentor. All Directors should maintain professional working relationships with each of the School Board Student Members. All Directors are expected to consider the opinions of School Board Student Members before making decisions on district matters and to engage with and provide guidance to the School Board Student Members.


School Board Student Members may be removed from their position for not meeting the obligations under this policy. The process for deliberation and decision-making may be determined in the accompanying procedure, as necessary, and must provide Student Members authority to recommend and decide on removal.


Mid-year vacancies will be filled using a selection process similar to that used to select Student Members during the regular cycle. The timeline and process may be modified or shortened to meet the needs of the School Board in filling the vacancy.