From: Judy McCormick
Granted, I am biased writing this letter as a grandmother of three Brown County school students, but I was disappointed that I did not see any mention in The Republic about Brown County’s eighth-grade class that won the national “We the People” civics competition in Washington, D.C., for the second straight year last weekend.
I fully understand that the Brown County Democrat is the venue for most of the news about Brown County students and schools, but a story as newsworthy as this should be printed in The Republic as well, in my opinion.
For those unfamiliar with the “We the People” program, it is an educational model that teaches students in fifth, eighth and 12th grades about the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. After a semester of study about American history and constitutional philosophy, current events and applicable court cases, students testify in mock congressional hearings before panels of volunteer judges.
The Brown County Junior High eighth-grade class (which included my granddaughter) beat dozens of other junior highs throughout the state to win the state competition on Dec. 18; then these 24 students went on to win the national competition in Washington, where they competed against schools from across the country.
As an observer of their practice trial last week at the Brown County Playhouse that was held in preparation for the national competition, I was amazed at the passion, devotion and time Michael Potts put into preparing his students for the event and the poise, maturity and intelligence the students displayed as a result of his efforts.
They all should be highly commended for this achievement. Additionally, they had to raise $40,000 to make the trip to Washington to participate, which in and of itself was no small achievement.
As a parent whose son and daughter attended Bartholomew County schools all the way from elementary through high school, I have to say that I have been most impressed with the teachers and programs of our neighboring school system of Brown County.