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James Sheahan Catholic High School School (JSCHS) Captains Sophia Bayada and Hugh Thornhill came up with the initiative to hold an Inaugural Young Leaders of Orange Summit to bring together local student leaders to discuss issues of common concern, and in their words, “in doing so, establish goals and pathways to enhance youth wellbeing and project positive change to the local area, promoting a unified, rural voice that embraces differences and collaborates to promote inclusivity and unity among the schools”.
They recently had an initial Meet and Greet Breakfast on Friday 11 March at “The Hive” in Orange. There were 37 students and approximately 10 staff who attended, from seven schools from the Orange and Cabonne area. They have since had interest from another school to become involved in the Summit. The inaugural Summit will be held on 19 May 2022. The students are hoping that it becomes an annual event.
Peter Meers, Principal of JSCHS said “We are very excited about this great initiative that brings the schools across our community and our School Leaders together. All schools recognise the growing importance and value of giving students a stronger, more authentic voice in their learning, well-being and school experience. This is about giving our youth an opportunity to share their common concerns and to have a say in how we can better address these concerns in our schools and wider communities. I look forward, as I’m sure my fellow Principals do, to listening to the thoughts, reflections and ideas of these amazing young leaders from across our schools.”

Student gathering to discuss the planned youth Summit.