Democracy and Citizenship in our Classrooms

Dear Parents,

With our current election cycle, our school has a terrific opportunity to educate our students about  American democracy, citizenship and the constitution.  We will maintain a culture of fairness in our classrooms where teachers are fair, reasonable, and respectful to all the competing views.  In recent months, we have had some negative behaviors on our playground and school buses associated with student politic talk.  To help guide our students in a positive way,  our teachers have been discouraging the negative and hurtful aspects of these conversations,  while at the same time helping children to see how they can  learn about the election and how they can have a respectful discussion about it within the classroom.  

In our Social Studies classes this year and  into the next school year, students will have many opportunities to learn how they can hold  differing opinions, but continue to maintain great friendships.   Our goal is to create a nonpartisan educational environment where students learn about our government and the election process.  This offers our students a chance to see how to have a healthy and constructive debate.  We find when given a dialogue structure, students can debate, deliberate and express their own views with dignity and respect.   We are excited that students are engaged in the world around them and look forward to helping to develop their own sense of citizenship locally and globally.  Every election cycle is an exciting time for educating our students and we will embrace it in the most  positive and productive manner.  

In the past, our Student Council has held mock elections for our students and we will continue to do this early next school year as it gives our students a chance to have a voice. If you have any questions or concerns  about this, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Additionally, if your child is not being treated fairly and with respect when having these discussions  (in any setting), please contact me directly.

Sincerely,

Kathryn Castonguay, Principal