COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - A special group of students at Shaw High School had the opportunity to eat lunch with Columbus Mayor Skip Henderson and talk about issues in the community.
“I want him to hear the students' voice. I want him to hear the future of Columbus. I want him to see the problems that are happening and see everything that is going on in the community,” said Shaw High School student Chance Price. Price is an eleventh grader at Shaw High School who says he’s using his voice to impact his community in a positive way. A discussion he had in class with other students led to a talk with Mayor Skip Henderson Tuesday.
“Chance wanted to have the mayor to respond and our gracious mayor not only responded, but he asked could he come and speak with not only Chance but several other groups of students to talk about some of the issues that thy had,” said Shaw principal Dr. Sureya Hendrick.
Students were able to have a lunch with the mayor and also have an open discussion about ways to bring more jobs to the city, better Columbus and make it a safer place in which to live.
“I never miss an opportunity to talk to young people. I mean that's who we're building Columbus for. Not for me, not for the guys my age. We're building it for them,” said Mayor Henderson.
Mayor Henderson says he hopes to find more ways to include youth in discussions involving city government issues.
“We can't operate in a silo. We can't assume we know what's best for people, particularly young people. I think they get really frustrated by that, they said as such. They think that sometimes just because of their age they're not taken seriously. These young folks had some outstanding ideas so we're going to take them seriously. We're going to try and engage with them as much as we can,” added Mayor Henderson.
The mayor hopes to cultivate a relationship with students to create a better dialogue with youth.