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Rising Senior Named to Governor’s Student Safety Advisory Council

May 31, 2024
By Lake Catholic

Caden Boyes (Lake Catholic Class of 2025) has been selected as one of 16 high school students from around the state for the 2024-2025 Ohio Student Safety Advisory Council. 

The Ohio School Safety Center (OSSC) made the announcement on Thursday, May 30.

Boyes said he filled out the application for the position, which included several lengthy answers, more than a month ago. That led to a 30-minute virtual interview with OSSC members. He almost didn’t get the word that he was actually selected.

“They typed my email wrong, it was missing a letter,” he said. “So, I never got the email. Mr. (Tom) McKrill sent me the email he received.”

Although he said he believes he and his fellow students are safe at Lake Catholic and that they’re all taken good care of, nothing is perfect and there are always ways to improve.

“School safety has to be the No. 1 priority of our days,” he said. “So this is a big opportunity to learn more about it and bring ideas for upgrades, whether physical or procedural, back to Lake Catholic.”

Governor Mike DeWine created the council in 2022 to help OSSC leadership identify school safety concerns and develop innovative solutions to address them. Students from last year’s council will present their capstone projects at the 2024 School Safety Summit this summer, according to a press release.

“This year’s students took their capstone projects to new levels and got their peers more involved in the everyday safety activities at their schools,” said OSSC Executive Director Emily Torok. “Our alumni members quickly got the new council onboarded and they all supported each other in a student network to promote safety across the state. I encourage everyone to reach out to their local council members to learn about their projects and initiatives. They are very impressive.”

The Council will be invited to attend the in-person Ohio School Safety Summit on July 31-Aug. 1 at the Columbus Convention Center to network with their peers and attend initial informational sessions on violence prevention strategies and emotional safety.

Council members will develop strategies to encourage their peers to actively engage in maintaining a safe school environment and will be advocates for students’ overall well-being. Students will work directly with OSSC school safety liaisons to organize events, focus groups, and trainings to help highlight student success and safety best practices at various schools. These members will also act as a sounding board for the Ohio School Safety Working Group and OSSC on student marketing campaigns and other projects to ensure that student voices are represented. 

Eight of the previous year’s Council members have agreed to return this upcoming year as mentors for the incoming council. They will continue to work on projects in their communities and act as force multipliers for school safety improvements.

Governor DeWine created the Ohio School Safety Center in 2019. It is housed within the Ohio Department of Public Safety and works to assist local schools, colleges and universities, and law enforcement agencies to prevent, prepare for, and respond to threats and acts of violence, including self-harm, through a holistic, solutions-based approach to improving school safety.

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