Making Democracy Work

CivicsBee

2016 Civics Bee

The Wayland team won the League of Women Voters Civics Bee for the second year in a row Sunday. Wayland moved from second place at halftime to win, scoring 625 points, ahead of 582 scored by Sudbury and 545 scored by Weston

The Civics Bee is sponsored by the Leagues in the three towns, and has intergenerational teams of middle school and high school students and adults answering questions on federal, state and local government. Presidents was the special theme section of this Presidential election year Bee.

Ashley Edmunds, a Wayland high school student, said the victory "was especially great since it's our second year in a row, and our teacher is so good working with us." Eva Urban Hughes and Kevin Delaney coach the high school team.

Charlie Moore, a middle school student, said the team prepared hard for the Bee. "Every day at lunch we'd get together in our social studies teacher's room to go over last year's questions and possible questions for this year." The middle school teacher coaches are Matthew McCormack and Jacob Montweiler. "Absolutely I'd do it again," said Moore. "Get ready to see me my junior year."

Miranda Jones, an attorney and one of the Wayland adults participating, noted, "it is great to see how well-educated all the kids in our three school systems are."

Members of this year's Wayland team were middle school students C. J. Brown, Brendan Ho, Charlie Moore, Genesis Morales, Felix Thompson, Ryan Urato and Kevin Wang. High school team members were Ashley Edmunds, Zach Falber, Josh Lee, William Paik, Sarah Raines, Sten Shearer, Lily Toto and Luke Xu. The adult members were Robert Gordon, Miranda Jones and Jonathan Saxton.

On the Sudbury team were high school students James Ensley, Rohini Guin, Daniel Kerrigan, Emmet Klein, Jacqueline Laferriere, Camille Slattery, Clara Walsh and Ashley Wong. Laferriere and Wong were student coaches. The Sudbury adults were Radha Gareya, Susan Iuliano and Leonard Simon. No middle school team was available for Sudbury.

The Weston team featured middle school students Ezra Gordon, Sadie Noone, Anna Singleton, Haley Wims, Albert Wu and Andrew Yao. High school students from Weston were Erica Leung, Srishti Lulla, Esther Tzau, Alisha Ukani and Sarah Yi. Weston adults participating were Harvey Boshart, Doug Gillespie and John Hennessey. Coaches were Ed McLaughlin for the middle school and Monny Cochran for the high school.

The League of Women Voters of Weston hosted the eighth annual Civics Bee, which was funded in part by a grant from the Weston Cultural Council, a local agency supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council. The moderator was Jo-Ann Berry of the Acton Area League. Steve Lowe, a retired history teacher, was judge, and Avery Chaplin of Weston provided graphics and technical assistance.

The Bee featured questions on voting, the legislative, judicial and executive branches of government, Presidents and a lightning round where every answer was a number. This year's group project had the teams matching up Presidential firsts, such as first President sworn in by a woman (Lyndon Johnson), first born outside the 13 original colonies (Abraham Lincoln), first to be President of all 50 states (Dwight Eisenhower), and first who spoke English as his second language (Martin Van Buren, born in a Dutch community in New York).