Secretary of State
Secretary Grayson Presents Award for State Voter Essay Contest
(Berea, KY) When it comes to talking about the importance of democracy, there is none better in the Commonwealth than Madison County’s own Candace Faith Moberly. Secretary of State Trey Grayson today presented a first place award in the Office of the Secretary of State Voter Slogan and Essay Contest to the Madison Southern High School student.
Moberly, the winning 10th grader in the contest, was selected among numerous entries from across the state. Secretary Grayson, along with Dr. Beth Barnes, Director of Telecommunications at UK College of Journalism, surprised Candace by presenting her with the award and a $500 savings bond in a ceremony in the high school auditorium. The essay question asked students to describe what effects the loss of freedom of press would have on voting and elections in the United States.
“It is always a pleasure to award our top prize to someone as deserving as Candace,” stated Secretary Grayson. “She exhibited an exceptional understanding of the topic and produced an outstanding essay.”
For the past 17 years, the Office of the Secretary of State has held a statewide slogan and essay contest for Kentucky high school students. Under his administration, the contests have become part of Grayson’s efforts to increase civic literacy among Kentucky’s youth. Grayson’s primary effort, the Civic Literacy Initiative of Kentucky (CLIK), is a multi-year effort for enhancing long-term civic engagement and civic literacy within the Commonwealth. CLIK recently established the Kentucky Teacher Network for Excellence in Civic Education and Civic Engagement, which seeks to provide a professional learning community for P-12 civic educators in order to share knowledge, skills, curriculum, and assessment tools. The initiative has been recognized as a national model to promote a better informed and engaged electorate.
The Office of the Secretary of State also sponsors a number of programs that involve students directly within their classrooms. Currently, the Office is conducting a statewide mock primary election for Kentucky’s public universities and will visit the Eastern Kentucky University campus on Monday, April 16, 2007. The Office also hosts mock general elections for high school students and Constitution Day activities for classrooms of all ages.
“In order for students to become more engaged in our society and eventually become active citizens, we must take civic education directly into the classroom. Activities such as the Voter Slogan and Essay Contest allow teachers to bring civics education to life in the classroom while allowing them to focus on the current Core Content required by the Kentucky Department of Education.”
The Office of the Secretary of State Voter Slogan and Essay Contest is also sponsored by the University of Kentucky Scripps Howard First Amendment Center and the Kentucky Education Association. The essay contest was open to all Kentucky high school students in grades 9-12, and a winner was selected from each grade.
For more information about the Voter Slogan and Essay Contest or the Civic Literacy Initiative of Kentucky, please visit the Office of the Secretary of State’s website at www.sos.ky.gov/secdesk/initiatives.
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