John Schickel: Kentucky Senate Page Programs is an exciting opportunity for high school students

There are many time-honored traditions in the Senate, but one of my favorites is the Senate Page Program. The program invites high school juniors and seniors of high academic standing to apply for a position as a Senator page boy. I would like to encourage students in my district, which includes North and Central Boone Counties, to apply to be a Day Page or Sunny Page in the current 2023 session, or to be a full-time page for the 2024 Legislative Session.

Daily side program

The program is an extension of the full-time Senate side program. This is for students aged 12-18 who are either too young or cannot commit to being a full-time site. Pages generally have a Senate sponsor, typically the senator elected to their home district, but they perform a valuable service for all senators and staff by delivering messages, running errands, copying material, and delivering bills – to name a few. On a typical day, a pool of sites is available.

Senator John Schickel and guest in the Kentucky Senate chamber during the 2022 Legislative Session. March 29, 2022. (Photo by Bruce Phillips, Legislative Research Commission.)

I encourage you to contact my office if you know a student between the ages of 12 and 18 who would like to participate in the Daily Page program during Part II of the 2023 Legislative Session, which reconvenes on Tuesday 7 February. I would be happy if you came to Frankfurt, experience the legislative process and be recognized in the Senate Chamber. You can reach my office at 502-564-8100 or email [email protected].

Sunny Page program

This is a special program for children with disabilities that also allows them to participate in the legislative process while serving as Senate bellboys. Sunny Pages are introduced to the Senate with their sponsor, perform their duties to the best of their ability, and receive a Sunny Page t-shirt and certificate of appreciation at the end of the day. My colleague Senator Danny Carroll, along with former Senator Dennis Parrett, created this program not only to bring children with disabilities into this tradition, but also to raise awareness of some of the issues affecting people with special needs.

To become a day page or sunny page if you are not in my district, please contact your respective senator’s office or senate clerk at the phone number and email address provided above to arrange a senate sponsor. To simplify the process, please fill out the online applications for Day or Sunny Sides and submit via email to your Senatorial Office or Senate Secretariat.

Apply online as a Senate Daily Page or Sunny Page.

2024 full-time side program

As a full-time page in the General Assembly, students interested in a career in politics or public service within government have the opportunity to see first-hand how our state legislature works. Senate pages sit at the front of the chamber for general duties and support the office of the Senate Secretary. They respond to requests from senators and staffers within the chamber, and sometimes assist in handling Senate materials and supplies. Pages report to the Senate Page Mother’s Office, which reports ultimately to Senate Chief Clerk Donna Robinson Holiday.

If selected, a Senate page will serve for the calendar year in regular and extraordinary sessions. The 2024 legislative session will be a 60-day session. The Kentucky General Assembly will meet at 12:00 noon on January 2 and will continue until mid-April.

If you are interested in becoming a full-time Senate Page in next year’s session, contact the Senate Chief Clerk at 502-564-5320 or email [email protected]. governor You will then be asked to submit a cover letter along with a resume explaining why you want to become a Senator. Please provide all contact details. The case officer may then contact you for an interview at a later date. The case worker will also liaise with all schools in the area to ensure the applicant is of high academic standing and eligible to serve as page for the year.

Full time sites and day sites do not have the same responsibilities and are trained by their respective supervisors. They are taught where to be stationed during session, how to carry out their various duties, and are instructed on proper decorum in the Senate chamber. Each day page receives a certificate of appreciation from their Senate sponsor at the end of the day’s work.

Working as a Senate side has many advantages. Working in a professional environment gives students confidence and boosts self-esteem. Pages learn to take a high level of ownership of their work as the experience helps prepare them for the future demands of their academic and professional careers.

In addition to building meaningful friendships with other program participants, Pages gain a sense of belonging as they meet and relate to individuals with similar potential professional interests. You can also work and form relationships with many people across the state. Full-time Senate employees are paid $60 a day, which helps them learn how to make decisions about managing their finances, transportation, work needs, housing and new friendships.

I certainly hope that bright young students from the 11th Senate District will participate, and for those who do, I look forward to meeting you.

Senator John Schickel, R-Union, represents the 11th Circuit in north and central Boone County. He chairs the Senate Committee on Licensing and Professions. He is also a member of the Senate Committee on Banking and Insurance, Justice and Natural Resources and Energy.

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