Students Rule at School Board Meeting

Clarke County students reigned at Monday night’s School Board meeting. After a local scout troop opened the session with the Pledge of Allegiance students from Boyce Elementary explained the importance the “Kids Vote” program.

Eight scouts from Clarke County Girl Scout Troop 40926 opened the Clarke County School Board regular meeting session by leading the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance. The scouts then took a seat in the audience to observe their elected officials in action.

Girl Scout Troop 40926 of Berryville, Virginia led the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance at Monday's School Board session. Present were scouts Marissa Graham, Maria Vinson, Anna Blight, Caroline Ghaffari, Grace Bohall, Elizabeth Stanley, Bailey Trapnell, Gretchen Kalpmuts. Troop 40926 is led by Michelle Graham and Susan Vinson - Photo Edward Leonard

“We thought that it would be a good lesson for the girls to observe local government in action” said the troop’s co-leader Michelle Graham. Graham, along with Susan Vinson, co-lead the troop.

After the Pledge, School Board members heard the Boyce Elementary Student Council Association (SCA) express support for “Kids Vote”, a program that raises civic awareness in young people through discussions of civic issues and by conducting mock elections.

Derek Sprincis, a 4th grader at Boyce Elementary and SCA Vice President, described attending a recent Kids Vote Rally at Sherando High School. Grace Bohall, a 5th grader at Boyce Elementary, also attended the event.

“Attending the Kids Voting Rally was a great experience!” Bohall said enthusiastically.

4th grader Reid Cox , SCA co-treasurer for at Boyce said “Next year we hope more students will attend from Clarke County.”

At a recent School Board meeting chairman Barbara Lee (Millwood) expressed pride that Clarke County routinely produces more student voters for Kids Vote than larger surrounding districts. The reason for the larger-than-average Kids Vote turnout was clear from the statements of the Boyce students:

Derek: Why is it important for kids to vote?

Grace: Voting is a learning experience. Voting is a responsibility.

Reid: Our vote counts. Voting is a privilege.

Derek: How has Boyce Elementary been able to have the highest percentage of students’ participation at Kid Vote for the last 7 years?

Grace: Kids Voting is mentioned during morning announcements and teachers talk about voting being our civic duty.

Reid: Boyce PTO volunteers monitor the Kid Vote booth at the Boyce polling location. We have great school spirit.

Boyce Elementary 3rd Grade Teacher Elizabeth Cox said that the SCA student’s enthusiasm stems from the emphasis that the school places on civic responsibility.

Boyce student council representatives advocate Kids Voting program (l-r) Derek Sprincis, Grace Bohall, Reid Cox - Photo Edward Leonard

“The children worked very hard on the Kids Voting presentation and chose their words very carefully to reflect what voting meant to them” Cox said.

Parent and Boyce Elementary PTO president Laura Bohall was especially proud observing the School Board proceedings Monday.

“What I love about this whole thing as a proud parent is that my daughter Grace represented Girl Scouts and SCA at the same time!” Bohall said.




Boyce Elementary Student Council Association officers include:

Brooke Gray – President

Boyce Elementary student council representatives asked the School Board for continued support of the Kids Voting program - Photo Edward Leonard

Derek Sprincis – Vice President

Lauren Gibson – Secretary

Grace Bohall – Co-Treasurer

Reid Cox – Co-Treasurer

SCA Sponsors for Boyce Elementary include:

Elizabeth Cox – 3rd Grade Teacher

Daneesha Davis – 3rd Grade Teacher

Adeela Al-Khalili – 4th Grade Teacher

Crystal Meade – 5th Grade Teacher


CDN Editor: Thank you to Laura Bohall for providing the feature photo used for this story.