The Four Sabbatical Officers are General Secretary Alex Peters-Day, Activities and Development Officer Stanley Ellerby-English, Education Officer Amena Amer, and Community and Welfare Officer Lukas Slothuus.
Peters-Day has been sitting on many of the Committees that govern the LSE over the course of the term, and has been lobbying the School for representation on the ethics committee, and lobbied the school on the Woolf report and helped select the LSE’s new director, Craig Calhoun.
With the London mayoral elections approaching the Sabbatical Officers intend to begin finalising their plans and finish writing a student manifesto — directed towards the interests of London students. They will also begin running a voter registration campaign, plan anti-BNP protests and other election-focused events. In addition, the Sabbatical officers intend to re-launch ‘The Only Way is Ethics,’ focusing on what students think is ethical and what matters most to them.
Peters-Day said that of her time spent as General Secretary: “Primarily I wish I had spent more time at society events – I feel a bit chained to my desk at times, which is unfortunate as my favourite part of this job is actually going out and talking to students.”
Activities and Development Officer Stanley Ellerby-English has spent much of the term focusing on finalising a sports strategy, an initiative championed by his predecessor Charlie Glyn, which he claims will be his priority this term. Ellerby-English has attempted to achieve structural change to the School’s approach to sport, and has promoted the LSE Annual Fund which has seen the largest ever allocation to clubs and societies this year.
Last year, the Sabbatical Officers laid the ground work for an increased Tri London Championship in which the LSE competes against Kings and UCL in a wide range of sports over the course of one day.
“Last year LSE reigned victorious crushing all that UCL and Kings put before us, we hope for a repeat this year” said Ellerby-English.
For the rest of his term in office Ellerby-English plans to continue work on the Community Festival, Sports Strategy and Tri London Championship “Apart from that I’m looking forward to elections this term and seeing who will run,” he said.
Stanley commented of his own performance “I think if I had the knowledge and skills which I do know I would have been much more effective right from the beginning.”
Education Officer Amena Amer has focused her time on the implementation of a Programme Representatives policy and the Education Manifesto that will be presented later this term. Amer hopes these policies will raise awareness of, and address, several of the issues that students face at the LSE, stating “The meetings and stalls I had last year enabled me to get some great feedback from students.”
Amer also worked on a report for the Student Affairs committee to help guarantee a safe space for students to raise issues, and can be confident that their issue will be dealt with. Reviewing her performance Amer commented “I know at the time I was doing everything I could and working completely flat out. It would have been great to get even more students involved … but I did the best I could and am happy with how last term played out.”
In this term Amer intends to focus strongly on dealing and understanding the failure rates at the LSE and finalising the Education Manifesto for students. Whilst 2012 is when some of the government’s proposals in the Education White Paper will no doubt begin to be implemented. Amer said that it is “inevitably be mobilising and doing all we can to prevent this from happening.”
Lukas Slothuus, the Community and Welfare Officer, played a significant role in The Only Way is Ethics campaign and in organising the Students’ Union’s participation in the 9th November National Demonstration.
Reflecting on the past ten weeks, Slothuus said: “I have done exactly what I promised I’d do if elected – no big surprises or political u-turns. In other words, students knew what they were getting and I’ve delivered on what I said I would.”
He added: “There is plenty to pick up on for my successor, but I have 6 months left to achieve the rest of what I promised so hopefully the next Community and Welfare Officer will have the freedom to work on what they feel strongly for!”
Throughout Lent term Slothuus will be focusing on several campaigns, including “Your Hall Your Call,” an initiative giving students the opportunity to discuss any concerns directly with hall management. In response to the recent controversy over the Bankside Hall Committee elections, Slothuus will be working to rewrite and formally ratify residence hall constitutions.
He will also be continuing his work on The Only Way is Ethics, pushing for the School to increase the transparency of its financial transactions by publishing its budgets, expenditures and incomes.