New Student Government Association Seeks to Serve Student Body


Robert Barthell, Lead Videographer

Following Mr. Andrew LaLuzerne’s retirement from the job of Student Council adviser after serving in that spot for some 20+ years, students of NHS were left without an organization committed to upholding their values and needs.  Old Student Council’s dissolution also put the future of staple annual NHS events such as the Talent Show and Coffee House into question.

This changed in December when students were met with an announcement video regarding the founding of its replacement.  And three months later, they officially begin operations.  According to an email reply from group adviser, Mrs. Lisa LeMahieu, the students who founded it “wanted to use this as an opportunity to revamp it into something new to represent more student voices and tackle issues regarding student culture and policy.”

Instead of being one conjoined group, the new council, dubbed Neenah Student Government Association, will consist of two groups – a “Senate” and a “House.”  The House represents all the extracurricular groups in the school; clubs are asked to nominate two people to represent each club and forward these names to Mrs. LeMahieu, bearing in mind that the same person cannot represent multiple clubs.  The Senate, on the other hand, is an elected group, involving four members from each grade.  Applicants for this position were required to submit a written form as well as a 1-2 minute video describing why they were the best candidates for the position.  In a process, which took some two months to finalize, this information was reviewed by a panel of teachers, who ranked the most qualified candidates on a ranked-choice-voting scale.

Senior Destinee Ramos, a founding member and President of the organization, was pleased with the end result.

“We hoped that four students per grade model would provide a solid foundation for a balance of leadership, teamwork and collaboration. Now that elections have concluded, we are so excited to be moving forward with a full Senate with representatives from each grade who will serve for the rest of their high school career.”

Ramos added, “Heading into the future, we want to focus on providing student input into district policy, plan[ning] meaningful student-body events, and provide more connectedness throughout the school community. ”

The group was initially hoping to make its large-scale debut in the 2022 Coffee House event scheduled for Jan. 13, but this was indefinitely postponed because of the district cyber attack as well as elevated community transmission of COVID-19.  Speaking in regard to the previous Student Council’s annual Talent show event, LeMahieu said that she is not yet sure of the status of the Talent Show, but hopes to plan something for that time between May 20 and June 3.

Sophomore Chloe Sieman, a senator for her class, expressed interest in her new job.

“I applied to be in SGA so that I could advocate for all members of my grade and make sure everyone receives what they need to thrive at NHS.  I’m hoping to hear from student voices to push the most pressing issues for our student body, most importantly, establishing an efficient student government, and creating policies to improve the lives of students. ”

The organization will be having its first meeting sometime before spring break.