Skip to comments.Horlick voting project canceled
Posted on 11/01/2004 6:26:26 PM PST by TexKat
RACINE - The get out the vote project planned by Horlick High School students has been canceled.
Racine Unified School District Superintendent Thomas Hicks said what started out to be a class-related activity last week turned out to be a partisan event. The decision to cancel the event was made Monday morning after he learned the facts had changed and it was no longer a bipartisan endeavor.
"At one point it appeared it was going to be bipartisan and reach out to all of the community. But some groups decided they didn't want be part of it. Not everyone was interested in being part of a bipartisan effort," Hicks said.
"Over the weekend it turned into what gave appearance of not being bipartisan. And even if it's only the appearance of less than bipartisan the district's policy is very clear. Teachers and students cannot be involved in that type of activity during school time."
However, teacher Al Levie did follow procedure in developing the project, Hicks said. "The last thing I want people to think is that the teacher didn't follow policy or did something wrong. He did everything he was supposed to do."
Levie said Jose Martinez, assistant superintendent for secondary education, called him Monday morning to say that the trip would be canceled.
The students were upset by the news, Levie said. Although he doesn't know if the decision was prompted by political pressure, it was a shame that a valuable learning experience had been lost, Levie said.
If political pressure was responsible, he added: It would be "very disturbing that political pressure could be brought to bear to stop the project. If so, it's the antithesis of democracy. We're not teaching kids good values when a learning experience can be canceled by partisan politics."
On Friday the Free Republic Web site posted a Journal Times story about the project with this header "Racine, WI - Need FReeper help to counter massive liberal GOTV effort using public school students! To read all the posted comments check out http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1261500/posts
For more information, see Tuesday's print edition of The Journal Times.
Some left wing professors encouraged their students to protest the looming war in Iraq last year as well. Other teachers should have thrown a simple pop quiz that day.
The writer uses the term "partisan." Does that mean "pro-Democrat" or "pro-Republican"?
And why don't these journalists just report the news, rather than prance around the news. Just say "Democrat-leaning" or something....
Perhaps ;) LOL
It is only bipartisan IF the DEMS "have the upper hand"............
so called event Must be canceled
(Did I get that right?)
My father still calls it Highlick Hor School.
By Journal Times staff
RACINE COUNTY - With the election a day away, and Wisconsin smack in the middle of it, The Journal Times will be increasing its coverage of the 2004 presidential election this week.
The newspaper has created a weblog at: www.battlegroundwisconsin.com to report developments as they occur, and to allow readers to comment on election-related news.
It seems The Free Republic, a conservative Web site, led to the cancellation of Unified's planned voter drive on election day. Several readers of the Web site called School Board members and Unified officials to protest the use of high school students for a voter drive, even though the local Republican Party was involved in the effort. 11/01/04/12:48:33 by Dustin »Discuss this post - Currently: No Comments
I stand corrected, but statistcally I was in safe country! LOL
"valuable learning experience" my ass!
At the election victory party, they let my friends and I have free access to the champaign bottles. I thought it was pretty cool at the time. Looking back as a parent, I am appalled.
Now I am volunteering for the Bush campaign, doing some of the same things I did for Democrats back then. With age comes wisdom.
Thanks to everyone for your efforts.
I actually got a call on Saturday apprising me of the decision - and I was asked to "PLEASE call off the dogs!"
Nice work, dogs!
I should add that I didn't want to call off anything until they announced something officially.
What about insurance? What if someone, gets hurt, accosted.....?
Can we guarantee their parents of their safety?
What if they connect this to the union?
What if they file suit?
What if, what if?
Those were issues, certainly - But the main issue was the shocking realization that they'd never pass another referendum again.
Yup, Heh, heh, heh!
They lied. They did it anyway. The kids took off school, the teachers took a personal day, and the they met off school property.
They did it anyway. We found out yesterday morning that the event would proceed as they had planned, despite their claim that it had been cancelled. The teachers simply took the day off, and the students were excused by their parents (supposedly).
I ran into many groups of Horlick students as I was chasing election fraud all over the inner city. The naive idealism of the students was apparent - They told us "Go vote - it doesn't matter who you vote for" - Completely oblivious to the fact that they had been targeted, not to the wards where they live, but to the most democratic wards in the city. The following is the Racine Journal Times story that appeared online last night - and no, the JT made NO effort to interview anyone with the campaign regarding the reasons for opposition to the democratic GOTV scheme.
Students skip school to `Rock the Vote'
By Jazmín Beltrán Mendoza
RACINE - Amidst cold weather, rain and the unexpected pull of support from the Racine Unified School District, more than 250 Horlick High School students walked around Racine Tuesday encouraging residents to vote.
"We're here to make a difference and to tell people they have the right to vote for whoever they want in one of the closest elections ever," said 15-year-old Horlick freshman Eric Patton, who said he is a Bush supporter.
The students and organizers of the event, primarily Horlick teacher Al Levie, learned Monday of the districts' decision to no longer allow the students to be absent from school so they could participate in the get-out-the-vote effort.
Racine Unified canceled the event, which had been designed as a school-sponsored field trip, after receiving phone calls from members of the conservative Web site Freerepublic.com, which posted a Journal Times article Friday about the upcoming event. Superintendent Thomas Hicks said the effort appeared to be partisan.
So students took matters into their own hands. They skipped class, with their parents' permission phoned into the school, and hit the streets anyway.
From freshmen to seniors, students started gathering at Memorial Hall at 7 a.m. to collect fliers and form groups of about eight people. Each group had a chaperone, which included parents, college students and several Racine residents, all volunteers who donated their time to walk with the students.
"When she found out (the district canceled the event) she was really upset," said chaperone Tawnya Young, 35, the mother of 17-year-old Horlick senior Taneisha Young. "She thought the school would be behind encouraging people to do a positive thing. It doesn't say much for our school district."
Claudia Maria, 17, a senior at Horlick who moved from Mexico to Racine five years ago, said that she is unable to vote in the United States, but that she wanted to encourage those who can to take advantage of this
"It's very cold and it's raining, but we are all out here. Even though we can't vote we will still be affected by the result of the election."
"They (the school district) were taking away an opportunity for us to learn to voice our opinions and they have stopped others, like my ESL teacher who didn't come with us today because he was afraid of getting fired," Maria added.
But not all went smoothly. Arthur Shattuck, of 1521 College Ave., received a flier from the high school students telling him that he voted at Winslow Elementary School. The only problem: He actually voted at Stephen Bull Fine Arts Elementary School.
Ward maps show that the boundary between Ward 2-5 and Ward 2-6 runs down College Avenue. The students handed out the wrong flier to residents on his side of the street, Shattuck said.
The Racine City Clerk's Office received many phone calls Tuesday morning, mostly from West Racine, from people saying they had been directed to vote at the wrong polling site by people going door-to-door. Beverly Hicks, president of the Racine Chapter of the NAACP - one of the groups that supported the event - said it was "highly unlikely" that Horlick students were responsible, since they were using ward maps provided by the city clerk's office.
Not all parents were supportive of their children's decision to participate in this event. Racine resident Andrew Cross, 46, went to Memorial Hall as the students were starting their walks to pick-up his son, Horlick junior Kevin Cross after hearing he would be participating.
"I don't want him persuading people to vote for one person or the other," he said.
The remaining students had plenty of support.
A Rock The Vote bus was also at Memorial Hall handing out T-shirts, pins and other Election Day gifts.
"It's great that they were able to gather this many people despite the last-minute problems. It's definitely reflective of this election," said Heidi Pendergast, 24, deputy director of programs for Rock The Vote.
Besides the NAACP, Voces de la Frontera and Students United for Immigrant Rights also helped with the event.
Mark Zanin, acting principal for Horlick High School said it was unfortunate the way the events played out. "I wish there would have been a better way to deal with it. I think a lot of it had to do with the time constraints."
"We were just trying to get people to vote, not telling them which way to vote, so most people were nice about it. You are kind of learning how to vote too," said 14-year-old freshman Katrina Greenquist.
"I feel really disappointed in the school district for withdrawing their support in our effort to get people to vote," said Horlick student Xavier Marquez, 16, said Monday night. "For them to fold just because of a little bit of pressure from an outside group is wrong. From the beginning we have been nonpartisan. We are just focused on getting out the vote."
"We are very pleased with the results. The kids understand the importance of what they are doing and they are rising to the occasion," Levie said. "Shame on whoever tried to stop this."
This disease must be eliminated before it spreads further.
Message to all teachers at that school who participated!
There was, but it is not at all surprising that you were too stupid to see it. You putz! You pretense of a TEACHER!
Those kids will one day understand that you manipulated them, and they will hate your guts for it. As I do, for once being led by the nose to a Vietnam Moratorium march in order to divide a country against the war in 1968.
Well, ya know what LIBERAL TRASH!
I enlisted to fight in spite of you and I became a Republican!!!!!!
Now, I have just reelected George W. Bush for a second term with a unquestionable majority of the vote.
So yes, maybe there was a better way!
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