Speak Up

Student Voice – Minister's Student Advisory Council

2017-18 applications are open! Students! apply online now. MSAC are you ready?

Applications for the
2017-18 Minister's Student Advisory Council are open!

Calling all students in grades 7-12
at publicly funded schools!

Watch this message from the Minister of Education.

Deadline to apply is
Thursday, February 9, 2017 by midnight, EST.

You must complete and submit your application online within one session.
You cannot save your work. This is to protect your privacy and personal information.
Find out what you need to complete your online application.

Meet the current council members and see where they come from!

What is the Minister's Student Advisory Council?

The Minister's Student Advisory Council is a group of approximately 60 students from all parts of the publicly funded education system and regions of the province.

These students share their ideas and provide advice to the minister on a variety of topics regarding Ontario's publicly-funded education system. MSAC is a place where students have a voice and where they will be heard.

The first council made an important contribution to Student Voice by identifying Nine Student Voice Indicators. These indicators reflect the ideas of students from across Ontario about what helps strengthen student engagement in learning. Each subsequent council has made its own unique contributions.

Find out what each cohort of Minister's Student Advisory Council has contributed.

What is involved? 

The council usually meets with the Minister of Education twice a year.

To be confirmed as an MSAC member you must commit to participate in two expenses-paid meetings in 2017. Currently, the following dates are planned:

  • one full-day event on May 4 in Toronto
  • a five-day retreat from August 21-25 at a leadership centre.

During their one-year term, council members may create sub-committees on matters of interest and meet virtually to discuss them. Council members may also be invited to participate in optional regional events, meetings, and forums, but these are not mandatory.

Travel may be required to attend MSAC meetings. All accommodation, food and transportation costs are covered by the Ministry of Education for council members and, where applicable, parents/guardians or chaperones for students under the age of 18.

Who can apply?

If you are an Ontario student in grades 7 to 12 at a publicly funded school, you are eligible to be part of the council. Everyone is welcome and no special qualifications are required. The Minister is interested in hearing your ideas. If you have applied in previous years and are in grades 7-12, you are encouraged to reapply. Also, if you are or have been an MSAC member, you are still eligible to apply for next year's council.

The council celebrates student diversity and welcomes all perspectives and lived experiences – so please apply!

Who is selected?

The council celebrates student diversity. Successful applicants combine lived experience with a perspective that they are genuinely interested in representing. They demonstrate passion for issues affecting youth and a desire to make a difference. Consideration is given to each applicant’s past involvements and/or their proposed actions.

How do you apply?

Since all applications must be completed in one online session, there is a chance you could lose your work if you are disconnected. You have 60 minutes for each page of the application before the system will time you out. You should save your work often to prevent this.

It is a good idea to read through the questions in the application and prepare draft answers in a separate document before beginning the application online.

The questions are listed below – along with scoring information.

Applications must be completed by Thursday, February 9, 2017.

Once you are ready to start the application process, click on the button!

Apply for MSAC 2017-18

Application Questions and Scoring Information

The 2017-18 MSAC application has:

  1. a series of questions about your personal information, including your:
    1. principal
    2. school
    3. school board
  2. five questions about your personal experiences.

Your application will be scored based on the five personal experience questions listed below.

Question 1 (3 points)
Describe a time when your voice was heard and you believe you may have had an impact on your school and/or community.

OR

Describe a time when you believe your voice was not heard and please explain what occurred as a result.

Question 2 (3 points)
What have you done (or would like to do) so that all students can be involved and interested in their learning and have their voices heard?

Question 3 (3 points)
Members of the Minister's Student Advisory Council have the opportunity to speak up about various issues. You will be asked to choose your top five interests/priorities from a list of options. If your topic is not listed, you can add it.

You will also be asked why you choose your “Priority 1” topic and how you think your participation on MSAC can help address it.

Question 4 (3 points)
Describe a time when you accomplished something, or were a part of something, that you are really proud of. Why are you proud of this?

Question 5 (3 points)
Describe one or more personal experiences that helped to shape your perspectives and views. How will this influence your participation on MSAC?

What happens if you are selected?

Students being considered for appointment by the Minister will be asked to:

  1. commit to the to mandatory meetings
  2. provide additional information:
    • a short biography
    • home address
    • photograph
    • signed ministry consent form.

A social media scan may also be conducted for students who are being considered for appointment.

All students who applied will receive a letter about the outcome.

Giving Students a Stronger Voice

In 2008, the Minister of Education signed an order to create the Minister's Student Advisory Council, under section 10 (a) of the Education Act. The first ever meeting of the Minister's Student Advisory Council was held on May 12, 2009. Each year, approximately 60 students from across the province have provided advice to the Minister of Education on a variety of topics regarding the publicly-funded education system.

Questions?

Still have a question? Email us at msac@ontario.ca or like us on Facebook!

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