Prefect Council pledges to resume attendance at FAC meetings after a 2-year long absence

By Emily Khaykin

After a couple of years of disconnect, the Prefect Council has decided to renew its relationship with the Faculty Academic Committee in hopes of improving communication between the students and adults of the upper school community.

FAC is a body made up of department heads that makes curricular and education policy recommendations to the administration that might have an effect on students’ academic life.

“The prefects always had an open invitation to attend the monthly FAC meetings,” upper school math teacher and Chair of FAC Kent Nealis said. “But over the years, I guess the knowledge of the invitation was lost somewhere with the changing members of the Prefect Council.”

“Moving forward, I hope that having this relationship with FAC will expedite the transfer of information between students and adults on campus and in turn create a more effective and efficient framework for submitting, reviewing and reaching decisions on proposals and ideas originating from both FAC and the Prefect Council alike,” Head Prefect Chris Holthouse ’11 said.

“Every council has different ways of operating,” Nealis said. “There was one year where the proposals coming from the council were particularly aggressive and ended with more of a hard compromise than the normal give-and-take between the Prefect Council and FAC.”

After the rift, Nealis said, members of the Prefect Council stopped showing up to meetings for a while.

But this year, Nealis felt confident that renewing the relationship would be beneficial.

“FAC wants to increase the amount of trust and openness between adults and students,” Nealis said.

Next year’s Prefect Council hopes to get two seats on FAC, for which they would either rotate which prefects sit in or have two prefects who always attend the monthly meetings.

“If the Prefect Council is a constant presence on FAC, we can keep more up-to-date on proposals and FAC’s point of view on certain issues,” next year’s Head Prefect Brooke Levin ’12 said. “And because the council will have a better understanding of FAC’s opinions on certain things, we will be able to create more effective and mutually agreeable proposals in the future.”

A proposal that the Prefect Council recently presented to FAC included creating a communal testing calendar for all teachers in the school so they will be able to moderate the amount of tests students will have on one day.

“The Prefect Council just wants to make sure that students have a voice in what FAC says, and we believe that participating in their meetings will help attain this goal,” Levin said.