Mak­ing their voice heard

Spring Street Academy takes part in Stu­dent Vote

The Citizen-Record (Cumberland) - - FRONT PAGE - BY AN­DREW WAGSTAFF CIT­I­ZEN-RECORD AMHERST

They lis­tened to the can­di­dates and did care­ful re­search be­fore cast­ing their bal­lots.

These votes may not count to­ward the May 30 pro­vin­cial elec­tion re­sult, but the stu­dents of Christie Smith’s Grade 5/6 class treated the ex­er­cise in a se­ri­ous and thought­ful man­ner that could pro­vide an ex­am­ple for many adults head­ing to the polls.

The class was one of sev­eral at Spring Street Academy tak­ing part in the Stu­dent Vote on Mon­day morn­ing.

Stu­dent Thomas Smith said there was one key con­sid­er­a­tion he took be­fore mark­ing his bal­lot.

“It’s the com­mu­nity,” he said. “What do they do for the com­mu­nity and do they care about the com­mu­nity? I want to know if they’re do­ing this for the com­mu­nity or if they’re do­ing it for their own good.”

The stu­dents did not make their de­ci­sions lightly. For the past two weeks they have been talk­ing to their par­ents, read­ing their can­di­dates’ pam­phlets, and do­ing on­line re­search to help them make up their mind on who to sup­port.

“I talked to my mom to see what she knew and thought, and I heard (Lib­eral can­di­date) Terry Far­rell talk, be­cause he was at my ACR (an­nual cer­e­mo­nial re­view) for air cadets,” said Thomas.

Lily Gil­bert got her mother to bring home pam­phlets from the can­di­dates, and she went on her fa­ther’s com­puter to re­search her can­di­dates. She said she also spoke with her grand­fa­ther and got some in­for­ma­tion from him.

From the ex­pe­ri­ence, she said she learned one im­por­tant thing.

“I learned that it’s im­por­tant to vote, be­cause ev­ery­one should have the chance to say what they feel,” said Lily.

The stu­dents have shown great in­ter­est in the ex­er­cise, ac­cord­ing to their teacher.

“It’s just for them to re­ally have an un­der­stand­ing of democ­racy in our coun­try, and how ev­ery per­son has the right to vote and say who they think would be a great rep­re­sen­ta­tive,” said Smith. “It’s great to see them en­gaged.”

The bal­lots were to be counted on Mon­day with the re­sults to be an­nounced af­ter the elec­tion.

AN­DREW WAGSTAFF/CIT­I­ZEN-RECORD

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