Democracy is alive and well at Allen Elementary, where 88 students vied for 18 spots on the school’s first Student Council.
“It was so inspiring to see our students taking risks, public speaking, and for all these students to learn about civic and democratic engagement by voting afterwards,” said Principal Charles Chalfant.
On Friday, the third, fourth and fifth-graders running for Student Council gave their campaign speeches in front of their peers, teachers, and families at an assembly that lasted just over an hour. (See snippets from nine of the speeches in the video above.)
“I send out surveys to staff and families frequently throughout the year,” said Chalfant, who is in his first year as principal of Allen. “This is just one way to effectively get student voice included in our initiatives and decision-making process.”
He said he’d grateful to fourth grade teacher David Mattie for his organization and diligence in the production of the campaign and to all of the teachers who pushed their students and allowed them to practice and enhance their speeches in class.
“This was a team effort and I’m excited to begin meeting with our Student Council and seeing what initiatives they are interested in tackling this year, said Chalfant. “Families and staff alike were impressed with not only the event, but also with the maturity and creativity of all of our students’ speeches. The future is bright!”
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