YHS StuCo trudges ahead with state convention plans

OASC conference could be moved to next spring or changed to ‘virtual’ format

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Yukon High School Student Council members attend the 2019 state convention in Ada. Yukon is moving ahead with plans to host the annual convention this November. More than 3,000 student council delegates and advisors from 220-plus Oklahoma schools are expected to participate. (Photo provided)

By Conrad Dudderar

Senior Staff Writer

Although school sites are closed for the rest of the 2019-20 school year, the “National Gold” Yukon High School Student Council is moving ahead with plans to host the state convention this fall.

Yukon had been selected as the site of the annual Oklahoma Association of Student Councils (OASC) conference set Nov. 7-9 at YHS, 1777 S Yukon Parkway.

Yukon High School junior Ella Stanley, the Oklahoma Association of Student Councils’ state secretary, stands with YHS Student Council advisor Darryl Andrews last December in front of the high school, 1777 S Yukon Parkway. Although Oklahoma schools are closed for the rest of the 2019-20 school year due to COVID-19, Yukon StuCo is getting ready to host the three-day OASC state convention this fall. (File Photo)

“We’re still talking and working and planning for the state convention in November,” YHS Student Council advisor Darryl Andrews said this week. “We’re just hoping that everything’s cleared up and we’re able to do that.

“We’re hoping for up to 250 (student) councils and up to 3,000 delegates and advisors.”

YHS hosted the OASC’s state convention in 1982, 1993, 2006, 2010, and 2015; and the national convention in 2012. Yukon’s sprawling high school campus has proven to be an ideal venue.

Planning for this November’s state StuCo convention in Yukon began months ago before Oklahoma schools closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The OASC conference is being organized and implemented by committees of YHS students in grades 9-12 under the guidance of Andrews and YHS junior Ella Stanley, the current OASC state secretary.

The Hawaiian-themed slogan for the state convention is, “OASC Means OHANA and OHANA Means Family.”

“We’re moving forward with our plans,” Andrews said. “Our plans are to continue on at the pace we were doing. Our committees will start meeting again, probably in May. We did have a Zoom (video conferencing) call with student council kids last week. We’ll continue to do that weekly just to check in on them.”

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SOME ‘BACK-UP’ PLANS

“Our plans are to continue on with our state convention as scheduled,” Yukon’s longtime student council advisor reiterated.

OASC conference organizers may propose back-up plans if this virus-induced quarantine/lockdown is extended.

They could change the state convention to an online-format or even move the event to spring 2021.

The national student council convention, set June 22-24 in Colorado, will have a “virtual” format. And student council organizations in California and Texas – which have spring state conventions – are following suit.

“They’re just doing everything on-line – the speakers, workshops and everything are presented on-line,” Andrews said. “That’s by no means ultimate for our kids. Our executive director said it best: The OASC is everything but social distancing because it’s about relationships and core connections.

“If we had to, we could look at the virtual format. California set a pretty good standard on what to do and Texas is doing it now.”

Andrews, who starting teaching in Yukon in 1985, announced this week that the YHS Student Council has earned the 2020 “National Gold Council of Excellence Award” from Nat StuCo.

Yukon, one of 15 OASC chapters to receive this high honor, has again been recognized for achieving national standards of excellence in its student council activities and programs.

(See full story in an upcoming edition of The Yukon Progress).