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Boston Latin's mock election: a lesson on voting

Posted by Johanna Kaiser  November 1, 2012 02:11 PM

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Boston Latin School students check-in to vote in the school's mock presidential election Thursday.

Update (11/2/12): The results are in. The students of Boston Latin School unofficially re-elected President Barack Obama. Obama garnered 1402 votes in the school's unofficial election Thursday. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney received 340 votes, followed by Jill Stein with 139 votes, and Gary Johnson with 68 votes.

In what might have looked like a dream to campaign-weary voters, Election Day came early to Boston Latin School where students took to the ballot box to cast their unofficial vote in this presidential race.

Red, white, and blue balloons welcomed students to the school’s library-turned-polling station Thursday where they cast their vote for president, much like the rest of the country will do next week.

The students, coming in waves from their history classes, were directed to a check-in tables--some adorned with American flags, others covered with star confetti--where they were handed a ballot by poll worker parents, volunteers, and fellow students.

The students then cast their vote for one of four presidential candidates.

“You’re voting for Romney, right?,” one student asked another, standing around one of the many voting tables divided by cardboard posters.

“What’s the Green-Rainbow Party?” another student wondered aloud as students dropped their ballot in one of two covered boxes decorated in red, white, and blue paper.

An image of the Electoral College map and other election information was projected on one wall while the students voted.

The next president, as determined by the school’s approximately 2,400 students in grades seven through twelve, was expected to be announced Friday. The students did not vote on the state’s Senate race or three ballot questions.

The mock election, the school’s first, was held in partnership with the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum to teach students the importance of voting.

“They’re very excited and interested about the whole experience,” said Diane Rodriquez, who helped run the election with her fellow librarian Lee Butler, and thanked the students for performing their civic duty as they returned to class.

While the mock voting provided a glimpse of civic live to the students, they have already been learning about the election throughout the school year.

“All the students are learning about current affairs and the election,” said Thomas Kennelly, director of the history department.

The students have also taken advantage of the busy election season to learn more about politics and some have shared their thoughts through Twitter during the presidential debates, said Kennelly.

“They were watching the debates and engaging with other students,” he said.

(Photo by Johanna Kaiser for

Boston Latin School students drop their ballots in ballot boxes at Boston Latin School's mock election

Twitter: @YTFenwayKenmore

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