NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - After more than a decade, Metro Nashville Board of Education is adding student representatives to their group of elected officials.

“Students in my experience have always risen to the occasion and have always had insightful things to say. It’s just long overdue,” said Gini Pupo-Walker, Metro Nashville School Board member. “

This fall, Abenezer Haile, will join the Board of Education as a student representative. The rising junior is one of two students selected to serve.

“This virtual year made us realize we had to actually care about the mental health of our students. It shouldn’t take a virtual year for those questions to be asked. That is something we will be focusing on,” said Haile.

Board member Gini Pupo-Walker led the push to get students back on the board.

“Curriculum, content, instructions, teachers, all of that, in the end, is really designed to help students learn and grow and graduate for the world. So, I think it’s important to hear directly from students,” stated Gini.

Beyond this term, the board plans to select a rising junior every year to serve for two years. Haile will participate in his first board meeting on Sept. 14th alongside Angelie Quimbo, who was also selected.

“I feel like the person who replaces me will hopefully have an easier time doing their job because I have established a new method or system of doing things,” said Haile.


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