Student Body Meetings
Friday nights at Deep Springs are perhaps the most striking example of the fact that we do things differently around here. The entire student body meets for from 3 to 10 hours depending on our business, and we talk about everything from the funny stuff that staff members said during breakfast to how we should interpret the isolation policy.
A few minutes after the BHers are done with the dishes, the SB president will tell us where the meeting will happen. In the dead of winter, most happen in the boardinghouse (where coffee is readily available), main room, or dormitory "rumpus room". But on warm summer nights we convene at various spots around the valley, such as mountaintops, sand dunes, the horse barn, or the dairy silo.
Our discussions vary widely in gravity and reach. The Student Body can and does censure, suspend, or expel students for serious reasons. We also decide on faculty hiring, course offerings, and student admissions. Each of these issues recieves careful, and sometimes agonized, consideration and attention.
Much of the work for governance happens outside of SB meetings. Committees convene weekly to discuss the curriculum, compose the next newsletter to alumni, or work out applicant recruiting. Each of the committees reports to the student body for its approval.
After official business is concluded, the SB sits in silence together for a few minutes, reflecting on the week. The meeting then ends with evaluations of the night's work and recent happenings around the ranch. Afterwards, members of the SB participate in "edutainment", which focuses more on the entertainment than the education. Edutainment can consist of wrestling matches, games of pictionary, or even obstacle course contests. By then, it's late at night, and many simply go to bed.