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Freedom and Park View High School Student Council Associations Receive Achievement Awards

The Freedom High School Student Council and the Park View High School Student Council were awarded the 2024 Achievement Award by the Virginia Student Council Association (VSCA) at the annual VSCA convention held in March. The Achievement Award recognizes a student council’s exceptional record of leadership, service and civic activities that improve the school and community.

To meet the requirements for the VSCA Achievement Award, a student council must submit documentation of completing a variety of activities throughout the calendar year. 

Some of the projects that the Freedom High School Student Council coordinated included: 

  • Presenting to 8th graders at Lunsford Middle School, Freedom’s feeder school, to discuss what leadership looks like in high school and how they can join the high school leadership team.

  • Hosting a welcome for rising freshmen at the Freshman Expo, sharing information about the transition to high school

  • Coordinating a powderpuff volleyball game. The Freedom Student Council created the practice and game schedule, worked with the girls' volleyball team which served as coaches for the event and ensured the event had referees. As admission to the event was a canned food item, the powder puff game was also a canned food drive. 

  • Decorating the main hallway with hearts with each student’s name for Valentine’s Day. When students arrived at school on Valentine's Day, hearts covered the main hallway. This activity fulfilled the required project of contributing to a positive school climate. 

Some of the projects that the Park View Student Council coordinated included:

  • Presenting to student attendees at the LCPS’ WILD conference in November and at the VSCA convention. 

  • Coordinating a canned food drive to benefit a local shelter.

  • Hosting tours and responding to questions from incoming Park View students at the Rising Freshman Expo. 

  • Coordinating an annual Park View tradition – Bermuda Week – which raised $2,600 for the Chris Atwood Foundation, a local nonprofit that provides recovery support services and advocacy for people impacted by substance use. The week culminated in a student-sponsored assembly with friendly competitions between faculty and staff. 

“They work so hard, they definitely earn it,” said Freedom Student Council advisor Grace D’Aleo. “I feel very lucky to be the advisor for our Student Council because they are such awesome kids. They do so much and work so hard to make Freedom such an awesome community. I do not submit for this award. It is completely student-driven. The award is offered every year, and Freedom has won it for several years because they put in the work to make sure they accomplish so much.”

Park View Student Council advisors Faith Primus and Nicholas Bailey had similar observations of the Park View Student Council. “They work really hard. They do a lot. Everything they coordinate is student-run. We are just here to provide support. They do everything, and they work hard to make sure their events are a success,” said Primus.   

Also, at the annual convention, Freedom junior Ainsleigh Wood was elected to serve as state president, and Park View High School junior Ashlyn Strayer was elected to serve as vice president for the 2024-25 school year. Freedom High School Student Council advisor Grace D’Aleo and Park View High School Student Council advisors Nicholas Bailey and Faith Primus co-serve with the students from their schools. As part of this election, Park View High School will host the VSCA convention, which will include approximately 500 student leaders and advisors from all over the Commonwealth, in March 2025. 

“VSCA is proud to honor these student councils for implementing a strong, well-rounded student council program at the local level,” said Lyn Fiscus, director of the Virginia Student Councils Association and Extracurricular Specialist in the LCPS Department of School Leadership. “Student council leaders are making a difference in schools across the Commonwealth with their leadership. We applaud their efforts and challenge them to continue engaging the students at their schools in leadership, spirit, civic, and service projects.”

The Virginia Student Councils Association is a leadership learning organization for student leaders from private and public schools throughout the Commonwealth. The Virginia Association of Secondary School Principals sponsors it. VSCA aims to foster student leadership in a democratic environment and to assist all student councils in becoming more effective organizations within their school, community, state, and nation.

Published April 18, 2024