Daily Local News (West Chester, PA)
Students attend DVCEE leadership programs
DOWNINGTOWN—Select students from Downingtown Area School District’s (DASD) secondary schools recently attended the Delaware Valley Consortium for Equity and Excellence (DVCEE) student leadership programs. Eight students from Downingtown Middle School and Lionville Middle School attended the 18th Annual DVCEE Middle School Student Leadership Institute at Upper Merion High School on Feb. 17, while 16 students from Downingtown High School East and Downingtown High School West attended the 28th Annual DVCEE Sankofa Conference at Bloomsburg University on Feb. 18.
The goal of the DVCEE programs is to help support the development of leadership skills and academic potential of students in DVCEE schools. The participating students from DASD were selected for their character, leadership potential, extracurricular involvement and academics. The one-day middle school program offered breakout sessions, a poetry slam, and keynote addresses, while the high school conference included workshops, a college tour, and a keynote address on traumainformed leadership.
“It was great to see our students so engaged in the topics that were presented,” Downingtown High School East teacher Lakesha Costello said. “They represented DASD well and made relationships with other students all around the Commonwealth.”
Participants learned valuable tools to become better leaders and promote inclusivity and unity. The students were enthusiastic about their experiences and eager to share what they learned with fellow students.
“I had so much fun at this event,” Lionville Middle School student Olivia Smith said. “We learned many valuable things about how to be a leader and good role model. We did many team building activities that I’ll never forget!”
“I was really excited to learn about different topics regarding DEI,” Downingtown High School West junior Olivia Armstead said. “The conference helped me learned essential tools that will assist me as a student leader.”
“It was an amazing thing to see our students come to life in such a valuable experience that brought new insights and opportunities for their personal growth and empowerment,” said Lionville Middle School teacher Meghan McDonald.
DVCEE is committed to equity and eliminating institutional barriers to provide all students with access to the best opportunities. DASD’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Director Justin Brown plans to continue to advance the district’s DEI objectives. “I am very proud of our students. Meeting students from all walks of life, including other schools, can be nerve racking. The students networked, gained new friendships and new skills. We look forward to them bringing their lessons and skills back to the district to make their buildings more inclusive.”