Lynda Newman believes a mock election for eighth-graders can be the difference between voting when they’re 18 or not.
That’s why Newman, who retired from Smyrna Middle School three years ago, has worked with the Rutherford County Election Commission since 1984 to provide middle schoolers and high schoolers an opportunity to participate in mock presidential elections every four years.
Newman and Barry Burns, a volunteer with the election commission, were at Rockvale Middle School this morning and later at Siegel High School.
“Quite of a few of them are excited,” said Newman, while assisting eighth grade voters at Rockvale. “They know it’s just school, but hopefully it will really make them want to do it when they’re an adult.”
Brittany Taylor agreed with Newman.
Taylor and other teachers had their eighth grade U.S. history students sign voter registration cards and cast their votes.
In preparation for Wednesday’s vote, Taylor planned a blind in-class election with no names attached. Students were told only of the issues attached to candidates A and B.
Today votes were cast for Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump.
“The president we have now is who we’re going to be when we grow up,” said Victoria Paige, an eighth grader. “My opinion was stronger, but there were points on the other side that I understood and I thought were good points. But the one I voted for I think was better.