Actions Guide and Timeline for Starting a New Council

Time Frame: 6-12 weeks

Step 1: Discovery (1-3 Days)

  • Principal shares his/her vision for the council and the roles it could fill
  • Review NatStuCo Standards for your school level (ML or HS)

Step 2: Research (5-10 Days)

  • Contact local schools to speak/meet with their council advisers
  • Secure copies of student council constitutions and bylaws from local and other schools

Step 3: Input (3-5 Days)

  • Recruit interested students and faculty to serve as a task group
  • Use 4:1 or 5:1 student/teacher ratio

Step 4: Design (1-3 Weeks)

  • Create an outline the council organizational structure
  • Define Membership: representation, council size, how students become members
  • Identify council leadership
  • Principal review and approval of council blueprint

Step 5: Draft (1-2 Weeks)

  • Write a council constitution 
  • Refer to NatStuCo resources and samples
  • Principal review and approval 
  • Make constitution accessible for student review

Step 6: Announce (1-3 Days)

  • Formally announce launch of the new student council
  • Utilize task group members to answer student questions

Step 7: Recruit (1 Week)

  • Open new member registration/application per the adopted selection procedure
  • Publish and information students of all related deadlines and criteria

Step: 8: Selections (1-2 Days)

  • Hold selections/elections of new council members
  • Publish and announce new members
  • (Officer elections can be held now or later, once the council is running)

Step 9: Installation and Ratification (1-2 Weeks)

  • Plan and host ceremony to install new council members
  • New council members review and comment on constitution
  • Amendments forwarded to principal for final approval
  • Host signing to ratify the first student council constitution

Step 10: Get Rolling (1 Day)

  • Schedule and hold first business meeting