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New student school board member announced

ABHUTCHISON, Sierra Sun

Tahoe-Truckee High School junior Emily Beauchamp sat through her first school board meeting last Thursday night.

Beauchamp was informed there was a need for a TTHS student board member to serve on the Tahoe-Truckee Unified School District board for the 2000-01 school year before the meeting.

So she sat through the meeting, to observe, take notes and find out if she was interested in serving as the student board member.

“It seemed like something that could interest me and maybe change my mind about what I want to be when I grow up,” Beauchamp said in an interview Friday. She introduced herself at the meeting to board members and said she had decided she would accept the school board representative position.

Beauchamp, who was born and raised in Truckee, said that educational issues have always been important to her. Her parents were both active with school board and school participation when she was younger; her dad is a former fifth grade teacher and her mom is a special education teacher.

“I want to go into this with an open mind,” she said, adding that her main goal is just to be a voice for younger people in the school district who often don’t get heard.

“I think I’ll be able to input more information and give them a broader view of teenagers and what’s important to us,” Beauchamp said.

Beauchamp, who will be 17 next week, said some of the issues that are important to her are budgeting money for a variety of activities (not just sports) and finding out about the proposed random drug testing for student athletes.

Her other interests include music and playing the guitar.

Ashley Whaley was the board’s first student member, who served during the 1999-2000 school year, an idea created by board president Suzanne Prouty.

“I think (Whaley) was a really valuable asset and gave us a whole different perspective on how the students feel about school issues,” said board member Cindy Gustafson. “It also gives them a sense of responsibility for giving us input on these issues.”

TTUSD Superintendent Pat Gemma will meet with Beauchamp in the next couple of weeks to help familiarize her with board functions.

“For the students, it’s a chance to get a sense on how government works; and for the district it’s a chance for us to include the students’ perspectives on school issues,” Gemma said.

“[Whaley] was not shy about presenting her views on things, and was great about coming to all of the meetings. She fulfilled her role by providing students’ views on things and I thought it was excellent.”


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