Make government accessible

An elected government is responsible for representing the ideas of the voters. It is hard to make sure that our representatives are fulfilling their duties when their weekly meetings are closed to the student body.

The goal of this year’s new government, as outlined by the Head Prefects Sammy McGowan ’07 and Hailey Orr ’07 in the Sept. 6 issue of the Chronicle, is to “build a stronger community,” which requires “active citizens that will be active participants.” It is nearly impossible to be active in a government that blocks its constituents from attending meetings or the media from printing the content of its discussions.

If the new government wants to foster a sense of community, it should allow the community access to its meetings and a full view of its decision-making.

Honor Board cases are, and should remain, confidential. Only elected representatives belong at these meetings. It is to the weekly meetings where school events and traditions are discussed and voted upon that we all deserve access.

Students accused the old government of doing nothing more than party planning, and until all of its deliberations are made public, this new government cannot prove that it has changed. The new government currently posts the minutes of its meetings outside of the cafeteria, but merely posting the content of a meeting without the actual discussion will not do.

It’s understood that the new student government has a limited amount of time to convene, but at the same time students have a right to know that their interests are being represented. Opening their weekly meeting Monday, seventh period is not too much to ask.

Only through this proposed transparency can the student body participate and hold the elected representatives of the new government accountable for their decisions.

Only through this proposed transparency can the new government allow the student body to be the “active citizens” and “active participants” we all want to be.

Without this transparency, the new government has no accountability to those who elected them, no way of proving to skeptics that they are more than just party planners and no chance of creating the sense of community we all want.

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