A Mildly Sarcastic Retrospective on the Student Leadership Council Elections


Diego G., Contributing Writer

The student leadership council elections were held recently, and as someone who only realized they were a thing last year, I figured I might as well do my community some good by offering my thoughts.

I’ve been going to this institution for about nine years now, and I only really paid attention to the student council elections this year, as I honestly can’t remember who I even voted for last year. Because of this, one of my biggest takeaways was how struck I was that something like this was even happening at a school not known for its student body participation. I was also surprised by how seriously it was taken. During election week it seemed as though the entire high school could talk about nothing else, testifying to how much of an impact on the community it made. While the elections undoubtedly brought many positives, they weren’t without their flaws.

One flaw was the number of positions on the ballot.  While they gave more people opportunities to help, many of the responsibilities were vague and seemed to overlap with other roles. This became clear when candidates all started promising similar things despite the different jobs they were running for. Another issue was how high the stakes seemed, realistically this wasn’t as big a deal as it was made out to be. This is good in the sense that it made everyone take it seriously, but bad in the sense that it made running more stressful and limited how creative candidates could be with their campaigns.

In my humble opinion, I think next year BASIS should try out a new system, the democratic lottery. In this system, anyone who wanted to run would apply, and the winner would be randomly selected from the pool of applicants. While at first this idea may seem absurd, it actually comes with multiple benefits, including drastically lowering the barrier to entry for more participation, and opening the floor to different types of people who would still make good leaders that wouldn’t initially apply because of obstacles like campaigning. Alternatively, a hybrid campaign lottery system could be an interesting way to raise participation and still allow for the benefits of campaigning.

No matter what happens in the future, I’m excited to see how the excitement generated by the leadership council election continues to affect our community and future high school classes.