Cheryl Votes for 2019 Oregon Kid Governor
The latest installment in our “Staff Engage the Arts” series features Cheryl Snow, CCAA Executive Director.
Oregon’s Kid Governor (ORKG) is a statewide civics program for 5th graders managed by the Oregon Secretary of State’s Office. Timed to coincide with Election Day in November, ORKG offers each elementary school in Oregon the opportunity to enter one student candidate into a statewide election that other 5th graders get to vote in.
Our very own Executive Director, Cheryl Snow, was thrilled to be chosen to be on the selection committee. In late October, members of the selection committee voted to narrow the pool of nominees to seven final candidates. Then, during Election Week, registered classes watch and analyze the campaign videos and vote for the platform and candidate they want to support. The candidate with the most votes statewide is then named Oregon Kid Governor.
Cheryl found the experience to be uplifting, inspiring and wonderful. Speaking to her participation, “All 5th grade students in the state were invited to submit short videos presenting a campaign speech focused on one topic they cared about, and five of us jurors were asked to rank them on various factors. It was sobering to realize what 11-year old kids are thinking about these days: stop mass shootings, prevent child abuse, protect the environment, help kids with disabilities, save endangered species, among other things. But on the other hand, it was astonishing to witness how articulate and persuasive these students are, and how amazingly simple and actionable many of their solutions are.
This was the highlight of my weekend, week, month — maybe the whole year. It was a positive counter-balance for the toxicity of the adult political campaigns we are now enduring, and gives me great hope for the future of our nation. I can’t wait to hand off the leadership baton to this generation!”
At the end of the process, statewide 5th graders elected Erikka Baldwin of Eugene’s McCornack Elementary and her community issue of finding homes for dogs and cats.