Student Representative to the Board

Akanksha Padheriya is the student representative to the City of Fairfax School Board. Akanksha is a senior at Fairfax High School and is very involved both inside and outside of the school community. She has been a class officer for all four years of her high school career. Additionally, she served as a Student Advisory Council delegate for the Superintendent her freshman year. At FHS, she is the founder/officer of Musical Connections (a musical service outreach club), Conference Director for FHS Model UN, and Officer for Tri-M Music Honor Society. Akanksha is the Founder/Host of Podheriya (a podcast) where she interviews guests with inspiring stories who have greatly impacted society such as youth leaders, CEOs, entrepreneurs, and artists. Akanksha has been playing the violin and piano for nearly 9 years, and is a first violinist in both the Chamber Orchestra at FHS and The Symphonic Orchestra at The Capital Youth Symphonic Orchestras. She is also the Director of Economic Advocacy at The Greater Good Initiative (a youth-led policy think tank) in which she engages in the policy making process and advocates for economic policies to legislators nationally.


Darwin Otchere will serve his second term as the Superintendent Advisory Team (SAT) as the student representative Fairfax High School. The SAT is an advisory group compiled of parents, school staff, business leaders and students working with City of Fairfax Superintendent Dr. Phyllis Pajardo that meets quarterly to discuss issues surrounding the city schools such as capital improvements, technology in our schools and city projects impacting the school community.


Otchere attended Eagle View and Willow Springs Elementary Schools and Rocky Run Middle School. Otchere is involved in student government, robotics and is a member of both the Math Honor Society and the Science Honor Society. Otchere is the recipient of the 2021 Peace Award, recognizing students throughout Fairfax County as peacemakers. In the fall of 2020, Otchere was named “Student of the Quarter” by the Fairfax Rotary. Otchere is the secretary of the Fairfax County Student Human Rights Commission, National Honor Society, and Black Student Alliance.


"I have truly enjoyed working with the school board, SAT, and community leaders this school year,” said Otchere. “I am so happy the hard work the school board and SAT put into the renaming process paid off. Katherine Johnson is a role model that future KJMS students can look up to because her life is a living testament that with perseverance and determination, people of all backgrounds can contribute great things to the world. Now, these students have a school name that they can be proud of. It is certainly my responsibility to represent all students in our City Schools. I am looking forward to what this new school year will have in store."


“This past year I have worked with Darwin on a number of important issues and I have been impressed with his thoughtfulness and commitment to making his community a better place for students,” said Dr. Phyllis Pajardo, Superintendent of the City of Fairfax Schools. “I am honored he chose to be a part of my Advisory Team for a second term and I know I will rely on him throughout the upcoming year to advocate for all students in our schools.”