On March 31, the Berkeley High School 2023 election results were announced in an email shortly after the end of school. The election that had taken place on March 28 was participated in by 70 percent of the student body. All grades fell short of the 90 percent participation goal, however the junior class came closest with 76.6 percent of students voting.
Drew Henderson won ASB President, and Erin Freeman was elected ASB Vice President. According to Henderson, in the future they plan to focus on restructuring leadership to make it more effective. They plan to do this by focusing class teams on specific goals and working to build more accountability for representatives. Henderson has also been in communication with the administration and has been working on improving the services offered to students. This includes talking with Jasmina Viteskic, Berkeley High’s Title IX coordinator, about expanding consent education.
Eliza McGlashan was elected as Senior Class President with 51 percent of the vote. According to McGlashan a large focus of her campaign was supporting students in what they want to do after high school by providing them with resources. When speaking on plans for the future, McGlashan also brought up prioritizing and promoting existing resources for students.
“A big part of my platform is making everything that we have at Berkeley High, readily available to students and making sure that everybody knows about it,” McGlashan said.
Zariyah King and Zamarah “Winta” Clark were elected Junior Class President and Vice President with King receiving 52.5 percent of the vote. Their main focus was centered around the student experience and providing resources to aid them. They also discussed events to help the school build their sense of community and other plans to help students feel connected and heard.
“I want to make sure that the student body has more say in different events that go on at Berkeley High, and all the small schools have a chance to interact with each other.” King said, “And I want to make sure that there’s more diversity in leadership … I will make it possible for me and other people on leadership to accurately represent voices that are in the student body.”
During junior year, many students start preparing for college by taking the SAT and ACT.
Clark discussed plans for resources for the junior class to aid them in an especially difficult portion of their education. According to Clark, among these plans were “a mental health day, where we can bring animals … A lot of juniors are going to be taking the SAT and the ACT… and start taking more AP classes. (We) want to make sure that people have what they need. And they feel like they have help.”
Sofia Bloom and Sophia Nishioka were elected Sophomore Class President and Vice President. During their campaign they focused on communication with the students they would be representing. Nishioka described their plan for gaining the perspective of the student body.
“Sophia and I are going to create a club to hear about issues that impact a larger amount of the community at BHS. We know that we’re only two people, so it’s really important for us to hear different ideas,” said Bloom. “We’re also going to hold host fundraisers … and supply drives … they’re both to kind of help the bathrooms because currently they’re a mess and we’ve heard from our fellow peers that it’s a really important issue to them.”
In addition, there was also emphasis on acting as a method of communication between the students and the administration. Bloom discussed their plan for communication next year and specifically talked about wanting to keep the students informed.
“What we want to do (more of is) monitoring the BHS website. And I think that’s something that our campaign did a good job of explaining. (It’s) an issue that I think is really prevalent, because people don’t really know what’s going on… even just the election, is a good representation of how people are a little disconnected. So we’d want to kind of bridge that gap. Like we want to be a conduit, basically, for kids, and then leadership, and then admin.”
The election announcement also included a statement saying that the election for Chief of Publicity will be repeated with more information to come.
The ASB Leadership elects focused their goals on student welfare and making resources more readily available to all students. Many discussed ways to better learn the needs of their peers and their plans to effectively create change based on the feedback they received. A large focus of the election convention was communication between students, leadership and the administration. This point continues to come up in the plans of the elected leaders as they find ways to improve the student experience at BHS.
Winners Drew Henderson, Katelyn Liao, and Mei Saphir are members of the Jacket staff but were not involved in the reporting of the story.