Based on a school Constitution, Westwood High School is governed by the same three-branch structure that governs the United States. The legislative branch, the Legislative Council, consists of students and adults (teachers, support staff, parents, and community members) and reviews and revises student handbook policies as necessary. The executive branch, the administration, executes the policies. And, disagreements about the administration’s execution of handbook policy are settled by the judicial branch, the Judicial Council, which is also comprised of students and adults.

 

Developed and refined over the course of more than two decades, the school’s application of the democratic design is the very foundation of a school culture wherein students are given a great deal of representation in making key decisions. The key to the success of this democratic process - one that indeed is woven into the fabric of the school - is that it respects the good judgment of the student body, and it holds them to high standards of conduct. The result is a healthy, high-functioning school environment in which students are rewarded with various privileges for living up to the school community’s high expectations that they (or the students that preceded them) established.

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