About 30 students at Talbot Hill Elementary School raised their hands and publicly pledged to serve their student body as the elected members of the student government last week on Jan. 12 at the MicroSociety inauguration.
Elected students were sworn in by former King County District Court Judge Robert McBeth. McBeth, one of the original members of the Talbot Hill Education Trust Board, has helped swear in students for the past 24 years.
The government includes a president, vice president, house and senate members. Of the 443 students at Talbot Hill, 428 students — that’s 96 percent — of the students registered to vote. Around 95 percent of those registered chose to cast their votes. Not to mention, 212 of the registered voters ran for office, and following the primary elections, 91 students moved onto the general election.
Upon election in October, the officers were tasked with learning how to become effective legislators.
The MicroSociety is a school reform effort that helps students create a real-world mini-society, complete with student-run business ventures, non-profits and agencies. Its purpose is to create a sense of empowerment in students, educate them about democracy and citizenship concepts, as well as help them understand the value of academic skills in the real world.
“A very integral and intentional part of our MicroSociety program at Talbot Hill is that we are committed to the civic education of our students as we know these are our community’s citizens of tomorrow,” said Sally Boni, MicroSociety facilitator, in an email. “Participating in our election process is a huge step in understanding the role and importance of being a caring and responsible citizen.”