In an effort to engage 4th and 5th grade students in the excitement of this historic presidential election, the staff at Veterans Park School brought the election process to life on Monday, November 7th, by offering students the opportunity to participate in a mock voting event.
In addition to voting on the presidential nominees, students also voted on three questions that would directly impact their school. Ballot Question #1: Should Vets Park be involved in the Toys for Tots Campaign and Parade this year? Ballot Question #2: Should students choose and commit to sitting at the same table in the cafeteria each and every day for the remainder of the school year? Ballot Question #3: Should Vets Park have a combined FUNd Run/Field Day?
“This is a great way to raise students' awareness of political issues and to promote good citizenship,” commented Veterans Park Principal, Melissa Knowles. “This is the first time we have held an election such as this at Veterans Park and the reception from students has been overwhelmingly positive.”
“Beyond casting a vote for the presidential nominees, it was important for us to include questions that would impact the students directly,’” explained Knowles. “We wanted to give them a better understanding of the voting process and to show them the power of voting; how impacts what happens nationally and locally (in our school) and that we need to make our individual voices heard.”
Knowles explained that, with the help of Ms. Nicole Sousa, Veterans Park music teacher, a ballot was created using Google Forms. Voting booths were then set up in the lobby of the school using study carrels and Chromebooks, for students to cast their online votes during the day. With the click of a mouse the student votes were tallied, and recorded in the Google Form.
The voting energy was evident throughout the building as students thoughtfully cast their votes one by one. After casting her vote 5th grade student Chloe Ray shared her thoughts about the opportunity to vote today, “I think it gives kids an opportunity to practice voting for when they’re old enough to vote.”
When the last vote was cast the online ballot was closed and the final tally was announced school-wide via a live special report from WVTS (see newscast below). Students and staff learned that Donald Trump won the presidential election by a slim one vote over Hillary Clinton. They also learned that Question #1 passed, Question #2 did not pass and Question #3 passed.
To view a copy of the ballot and the specific results click here.
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