FBISD wins American Association award for leadership in voter education

The National Student/Parent Mock Election organization has honored Fort Bend ISD with a 2016 “Award for Outstanding Leadership in Voter Education.” Sponsored by the American Association of School Administrators, the award recognizes school district Mock Election projects that demonstrate dedication, originality and resourcefulness. This is the third time that Fort Bend ISD has received recognition for its Mock Election.

“We are grateful for the quality of the work that Fort Bend Independent School District has done for the National Parent Mock Election through the years,” said Gloria Kirshner, President and Executive Director, National Student/Parent Mock Election.

“Fort Bend ISD is exceptionally proud to earn this award because it’s so important to us that we send our students into the world prepared for a bright future,” said Dr. Dupre. “The most important thing they can do as citizens is to vote, to have their voices heard with our elected officials, and to be active community members in every way possible.”

Superintendent Charles Dupre accepted the award on behalf of FBISD, on March 2, during the general session of the American Association of School Administrators’ annual conference, held in New Orleans. (See a short video of Dr. Dupre following acceptance of the award.)

During each U.S. Presidential election year, Fort Bend ISD hosts its district-wide Mock Election to teach students about the process of elections from the local to the national level. Students learn about the election history, election protocol, and the power of the election itself. All of this leads to the District’s Mock Election vote.

“The Mock Election is an opportunity for students to review the election process and government concepts, included in most social studies courses K-12, and learn civic responsibility and the power of one,” said Pete Yackus, Elementary Social Studies Coordinator.

The 2016 Mock Election project activities in FBISD began in the Spring of 2016, with a website being developed to include a project timeline, elementary and secondary activities, parent resources and voting links. To help kick off FBISD’s participation in the 2016 National Student Parent Mock Election project, the District hosted a Mock Election Poster and Video contest that invited students in grades K-12 to participate by submitting entries incorporating the theme: The Power of One. The contest was open April-May 16, with winners being selected in May at each school level (elementary, middle and high) for each category. The resources were used to promote the event in the Fall of 2016.

“FBISD’s Mock Election project is a huge undertaking that involves a partnership of dedicated school and District staff (including teachers, and Social Studies, Digital Learning and Web Development Services staff) who plan and coordinate each activity, whether it’s developing a project timeline, coordinating the districtwide poster/video contest or developing curriculum and activities for schools,” said Nancy Cowart, FBISD Secondary Social Studies Coordinator. “Fortunately for us, everyone is eager and excited to participate.”

During this year’s Mock Election, FBISD teachers presented classroom lessons and activities to help students gain a better understanding and appreciation of the voting process. Social Studies students researched past elections and the voting process; math students analyzed poll data, and English Language Arts students completed writing assignments on the impact of famous election speeches and quotations. As a culminating project, all students voted online in a Mock Election and analyzed both District and National results.

Winning 2016 Mock Election contest posters created by students Aziah Buckner, Vy Nguyen and Alex Chaumette.