Posted on April 9, 2024
Categories: Student of the Month

Jayliah is one of five siblings (all girls! one is her twin – who loves to make sure everyone knows is older, Jayliah laughs). She loves spending time with her family and her beloved dog, Brooklyn.

All of her siblings attend(ed) Philadelphia School District schools, but she’s the only one at Excel. She chose Excel because it was smaller, and felt like a good fit for her. Her favorite subject is English (she loves to read – currently a dystopian novel but she likes all genres), but she’s excelling in all of her courses, with a solid spot on the Honor Roll.

She’s got great school spirit and gets involved in a lot of school activities; from bake sales to participating in Temple’s Youth Conflict discussion group, where they have in-depth talks about everything from social media to mental health.

Her nominator, Principal Memon adds, “Jayliah is just a model, well-rounded student. She has the highest GPA in the school and is an active participant in anything and everything going on in or around the school. She’s part of student government, and her participation in the Temple Youth Conflict program from Temple University showcases her proactive engagement in addressing social issues and making a positive impact beyond the classroom.”

She’s already been accepted to Virginia State University, and earned the Joe Carter scholarship, so she’s starting all the fun of figuring out fall housing and courses. She’s a little nervous but mostly excited. She’s going to visit the campus later this month with her parents.

She’s leaning towards an Economics or Business Management major, with a longer term-goal of corporate law. “As a kid, I watched a lot of shows and always knew I wanted to be a lawyer. I see companies on the internet that have legal issues, or a person is having issues with a big company, and that sounds so interesting to me.”

We asked Jayliah our favorite list of questions:

1. What does being named Senior of the Month mean to you? 

To me, being named Senior of the Month means that I, as a student, am meeting all requirements and above. I can be used as an example to strive for bigger things. I am proud of my accomplishments.

2. Why do you think you were nominated for Senior of the Month? 

I think I was nominated because, like Ms. Memon said, I’m a well-rounded student, I have good grades, and I participate in extracurricular activities. I would also say that I rise to a challenge, which is a positive example for others.

Principal Memon adds, “Jayliah is just a positive, happy person to be around. She wants to make Excel South a better place for her peers, who see her as a positive role model and a leader in our community.”

3. You were nominated by Ms. Memon. Explain your relationship to her. Why do you think she nominated you specifically? 

I think Ms. Memon and I have a nice relationship. I feel comfortable around her and I can relate to her. Her achievements as principal inspire me to reach for my own goals.

I think she nominated me because I am a well-rounded community member at my school. I take pride in being an Excel South student.

Principal Memon adds, “I nominated Jayliah because she’s a strong example of what we do here. We help students succeed on an accelerated track, focusing on getting an education with no strings attached and providing the structure to support them. Our school is smaller this year which helps empower our amazing staff, providing a positive social and emotional environment. She’s a testament of all the great work our teachers and staff do here.”

4. What is one thing you’d like to share about yourself that most people don’t know about you?

One thing that I’d like to share about myself that others don’t know is that I’m an avid reader. It’s like an escape from reality – I can really get lost, imagining myself in the book sometimes.

I don’t love a particular genre, but my favorite book is The Lovely Bones. I also love to watch animated shows/movies; I love watching Spongebob or Rick & Morty.

5. What do you enjoy most when you are not at school? 

Something I enjoy most when I’m not at school is spending time with my family and dog. I also love playing with my nephew and nieces. They’re little – 6 or younger, so we sing and watch Elmo & Ms. Rachel a lot.

I also like to binge watch tv shows and movies.

6. In your opinion, what is the best thing about attending school at Excel? 

In my opinion, the best thing about attending school at Excel is that it keeps me busy and focused. I have great personal relationships with the staff.

It’s small, and personal. Feels like family, with inside jokes and a playful comfortable environment. You get to know people so well.

7. In your opinion, what is one thing that the School District could do to improve our service to students? 

One thing that the school District could do to improve student service would be to offer more tutoring options. Students might feel overwhelmed or intimidated by their workload, and may be too scared to ask for help. Maybe we can have peers do the tutoring so students are more comfortable with each other, relating to someone in their own age group.

Jayliah, best of luck at Virginia State and with everything you do next!