By Jackson Osteen

These past few months have been quite interesting for Pin Oak Middle School as the political hype that was the Eighth Grade Election has slowly faded, leaving us with the final products of the adventure, the President and Vice President. Over the quiet months, many people began to doubt the role of president and its significance, wondering if the role was just a part of a project, and whether or not the president had power. What was once the most coveted student-held role at this school has slowly faded to almost something irrelevant, as people forgot that excitement they had casting their vote on December 2nd, until now.

The Meeting

Thursday, President Tommy Lai and Vice- President McHaley Ho stepped foot into the Shared Decision Making Committee meeting as the first student representatives ever to do so. Lai had his plan preconceived, and after the meeting commenced he began to make his two propositions, in which both fulfilled promises he had made during his long campaign trail. The meeting was marked to help evaluate these propositions and eventually make a decision on whether they were plausible for the future of the student body.

Proposition 1: The “Big Promise”; The integration of Chick-fil-a and other franchise food into our lunch system.

What was most likely the highlight of President Lai’s campaign was marked by the day he promised the student body franchise foods during lunch, specifically Chick-Fil-A. Even though students speculated whether this was even remotely possible, Lai certainly did his part, as he spoke with clarity, and gave a realistic plan that requested Chick-Fil-A be brought in as a fundraiser every 6 weeks, to be available for purchase. And, of course, there are legal issues, and supervision would be a problem. Because of certain laws, the food would have to be sold and eaten outside, causing certain supervision issues that would have to be dealt with. After deliberation, the board offered to look into the possibilities of a single day trial. This alone was a big win for President Lai’s effort.

Proposition 2: A Modernized Dress Code

Lai opened the floor by saying this, “Students today want more freedom… dress code is restrictive, causing students not to have latitude with what they wear.” He continued by saying a less strict dress code would be less expensive, and proposed that student be allowed to wear blue, black, and grey outerwear. He proposed that the color and specific shade of outerwear not be prohibited, and suggested the maximize size of a logo be increased from the size of a quarter to no bigger than your ID. The committee was less enthusiastic about this proposal, noting that Royal Blue is Charger specific, and variations of this blue wouldn’t be allowed. They did say that further investigation into black and grey would be accepted.

What this means

Whether his propositions are passed or not, this meeting meant more than that. Tommy Lai proved that the role of president does hold weight, and it is possible to make a difference for what the student body believes. It was a message to future eighth graders- the election does matter. Lai made a tangible difference in this school, and future presidents will most likely do the same. Everyone who voted for Lai voted for what he proposed at the meeting, and future candidates must realize they can make a difference too.