The student council members at Stanley County High School again hosted the annual Capital Region Student Council Workshop.
The annual workshop was Wednesday, Oct. 2, at the Casey Tibbs Center in Fort Pierre. Students represented the attending schools of Winner, Stanley County, Lower Brule, Lyman, Riggs, Jones County and Kadoka.
“South Dakota Student Councils are divided into regions. We are the Capitol Region,” said Shirley Swanson, student council advisor at Stanley County. “Last spring at the state student council convention, I was made the Capitol Regional advisor. That means I am supposed to help the kids organize the regional meeting, along with other duties that I am not really sure of as of yet, as I have never held this position before now.”
“The regional meeting has been held at the Casey Tibbs Center for the past three years, partially because many of the smaller towns do not have a space large enough to accommodate over 100 kids. This year, there were just over 100 kids,” said Swanson.
“The more interesting items of the workshop are the group sessions. These sessions are planned by the students, and, in most cases, run by them,” said Swanson.
Each school has a local student council, and each region has a regional student council. The Capitol Region student council members are Bryson Muirhead, president, Lyman County; Tracy Nielson, vice-president, Stanley County; Shannon Calhoon, secretary, Winner; Taylee Stroup, treasurer, Stanley County; Ella Hand, reporter, Stanley County; and Daysen Titze, parliamentarian/sergeant-at-arms, Stanley County.
Each school has a regional representative. Those kids and their advisors are Lyman County’s Bo Pretty Sounding Flute with Gayle Mohr; Stanley County’s Kaylie Rathbun with Shirley Swanson; Kadoka’s Joey O’Daniel with Susan Sudbeck; Winner’s Brennan Backmann with Mona LaCompte; St. Francis’ Shaylee Black Bear; Jones Cunty’s Liz Fullen with Missy Valburg; Lower Brule’s Mason Jandreau with Heather Collins; and T.F. Riggs’ Morgan Jones with Kate Olson.
This year’s workshop sessions included the mandatory parliamentary procedure session. The kids taught this using a version of an on-line Jeopardy game. The other mandatory session is on Campaign Essentials, which describes the ins and outs of campaigning for office while at the state convention. Students designed their own campaign posters, and learned about the deadlines they need to meet in order to run for a state student council office. The kids took part in a Jeopardy-style game concerning the rules of parliamentary procedure. “The kids did seem to enjoy this method of learning what some people might consider an extremely dry topic,” said Swanson..
Another session the kids chose for this year’s workshop was tourniquet usage. This “Stop the Bleed” session was instructed by Stanley County Sheriff Deputy Dustin Baxter. Students practiced correctly applying tourniquets to themselves and to a partner. “Because we live in a rural community, often far away from medical facilities and first responders, time is of the essence. Knowing how to stop a bleed after an accident or injury can save lives,” said Swanson.
In another workshop, group leaders had students pair up, then one in the pair was blindfolded, while the seeing partner described to them a photo to draw. They then switched blindfolds, and had to instruct the blindfolded partner how to move about a small space to successfully pick up objects that had been placed on the floor.
The other required session, campaign essentials, included many activities including students designing campaign posters. They then described the poster to the group, and group members gave feedback on the designs.
In one presentation, the large group was informed on the various media sites the state student council operates.
For this session’s community service, students put together “birthday bags” for other children who may be living at the Missouri Shores Domestic Violence Center. Students decorated plain white bags, made birthday cards, and added the components for a birthday party to the bags. Items such as a cake pan, cake mix, frosting, balloons, forks, candles, plates, and even party favors became the contents of the bags. Missouri Shores director Sarah Reinhart, picked up the birthday bags from the Casey Tibbs Center. “We made about 85 bags that were given to Missouri Shores, and then a few of the attending schools took theirs home to give to their shelters as well,” said Swanson.