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Local students listen to talk by President

September 15, 2010
President Barack Obama addressed students across the nation for the second year in a row on Tuesday, giving school officials a better understanding of how to address the situation. Warren County School District Coordinator of Grants and Foundation Development Matt Jones said the district provided an opportunity for parents to choose whether or not their child would participate. Those not participating engaged in an alternative activity, Jones said. Students in grades 3-12 had the opportunity to listen to the speech, he said. According to Jones, individual teachers determined how to integrate the speech into their lessons. They used it as a learning opportunity in language arts or social studies, he said. Jones said officials at the U.S. Department of Education announced last year announced their intention to couple lesson plans, suggested reading and other activities with the speech. A nationwide controversy arose, he said, in part due to early language from the department asking students to draft letters about “what they can do to help the president.” The district provided an opportunity for parents to choose whether or not their children would participate, Jones said, as a result of the controversy. He said Superintendent Dr. Robert Terrill sent out a blast call Saturday, Sept. 11 regarding the speech. “The President’s speech is an opportunity for him to speak directly to the country’s students about the importance of education,” Terrill said. “While the district has no information regarding the content of the speech, last year’s speech encouraged students to study hard, stay in school and take responsibility for their education.” According to Terrill, parents who wanted to take advantage of alternative activities had to contact the building administrator.


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