Issues Night at Wisconsin Hills

Issues Night at Wisconsin Hills

On Wednesday, January 31st, I had the great pleasure of watching 7th graders embrace the value of discussing politics when Wisconsin Hills Middle School hosted Issues Night.  Picture a Science Fair where students pick a topic and present it to enthusiastic adults complete with some poster board, perhaps a little anxiety, and a lot of enthusiasm.

For many of these students, this was their first time openly talking about political issues.  For others, through the guidance of supportive teachers, staff and parents, discussing hot topics is nothing new. 

Before students began their presentations, students, parents and guests alike were reminded of the importance of their First Amendment Rights and Civil Discord. Dan O'Donnell of WISN radio cautioned students (and adults alike) on the story of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams' strained relationship. The former Presidents had put politics before their lifelong friendship and went years without communicating.  Only in their advanced years did the realize the cost of their decision and made amends.   Dr Paul Nolette of Marquette University also examined how easily politics can become a competition rather than an opportunity for growth and a celebration of First Amendment rights. 

After the opening speaches, the students eagerly went to their assigned spots to present their topics to the waiting audience.  Students took on an impressive variety of topics from Immigration, the Death Penalty, Gun Control, Health Care, the Environment, Police Body Cameras, Race. The Wall, and Kneeling During the National Anthem. Students asked important questions such as, "Should the drinking age be lowered?, "Should Schools Serve Junk Food?" and "Why should schools spend money on electronics?"  They asked if college should be free, or not?  

Through Issues Night, students learned to present their ideas.  They communicated complex issues and were forced to use reason and civility to get their point across. It was a fun and thought-provoking evening.  

Thank you for the teachers, administrators, parents, and students.  Once again, I feel privileged to have had the chance to participate. Let's keep the kids talking!







Posted on 02 Feb 2018, 22:27 - Category: Issues Night at Wisconsin HIlls

Paid for by Heather Gilvary-Hamad
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