As part of their government unit in social studies class, first-grade students were studying the pending presidential election and decided they wanted to participate in an election.
This sparked the creation of the “Read to me… Who will it be?” contest through which students would vote to select a special guest to read a story to them.
Principal Izell McGruder, Assistant Principal Maria Regan and Counselor Mable Ferry were selected as candidates. The three campaigned during the week by visiting classrooms to make speeches and hanging campaign posters around the school.
Friday morning, the three met in a town hall debate hosted by moderator, P.E. teacher Coach Clint Shaw. Each homeroom class represented a different state, and each “state” was given the opportunity to ask questions during the debate. The questions included “Why is reading important?” “What would you do to help students who don’t like to read?” and “Why should you be elected to read to our class?”
Following the debate, students returned to their classrooms to cast their votes.
“I’ve never seen them so serious about something,” first-grade teacher Catherine Greer said. They are really taking their time thinking about who to vote for.”
All votes were counted by an independent party, and, by a landslide, Principal Izell McGruder was “elected” to read to the first-grade class.
“We have had a great time with the process, and the debate this morning was the most fun I've had at school in a long time,” McGruder said after his win.