Teen Foundation BH hosts forum without coordinator

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From the Sept. 27 print edition

Michelle Banayan news editor

The Board of Education candidates for the current 2013-2014 school year — James Fabe, Howard Goldstein and Lisa Korbatov — will speak in a panel for the community’s youth during the fifth-annual Teen Foundation BH Board of Education Candidates Forum on Wednesday, Oct. 2, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the John Cherney Lecture Hall. Students who attend the forum will be able to ask the candidates questions regarding their concerns with the school board’s policies and future plans.

The Teen Foundation BH (formerly known as Teen BHEF) is a youth organization modeled after the The Foundation BH (formerly known as the BHEF). However, due to changes within The Foundation BH, The Teen Foundation BH no longer has a designated adult coordinator and is left to plan this event using the effort of its members, grades seven to 12, and the aid of community volunteers such as former mayor Les Bronte and Parent-Teacher-Student Association (PTSA) President Franny Rennie.

Furthermore, the PTSA offered to sponsor the forum financially as it has in previous years, but The Teen Foundation BH declined, “for the purpose that it is a teen-run organization coordinating teen-oriented events and fundraising for other teen organizations, and wants to do the forum independently and stand on its own,” The Teen Foundation BH President Michelle Adams said.

“Now that we don’t have a specific coordinator, planning the forum [ourselves] provides an opportunity for us to demonstrate that we can stand on our two feet as young leaders in the community. This event isn’t necessarily us having to prove ourselves, but it’s more of an introduction for a new Teen Foundation BH which is ready to lead the Beverly Hills youth in any way possible,” she continued.

Adams will moderate the forum, beginning with six questions for the candidates that she and the rest of the members came up with during their monthly meetings.

“As a group, we discussed our opinions on the current school policies and its issues and we worked really hard to formulate questions that we think will spark great responses from the candidates,” Teen Foundation BH member Daniel Partiyelli said.

Afterward, the organization will open up the panel to the audience members, which will include on-campus clubs such as the Interact Club.

“This is a great chance for students on campus to converse with upcoming school board members and learn about what is happen- ing in their own academic environment,” Interact Club President Nicole Sayegh said, “and I’m happy to have members of the Interact Club show their interest in the local politics and support other teen organizations.”

Although the members of The Teen Foundation BH lost their adult coordinator, they are not allowing that to get in the way of planning future events. In addition to volunteering at local venues, the organization is scheduled to host its second annual Spring Fling Fundraiser next semester.

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