#agswarriors Host Community Forum on Public Policy
Click the image above to see Ohio Representative Jonathan Dever challenge #agswarriors for their next project. Working from an issue that impacts them or their families, students have written proposed legislation that they hope will make it to the General Assembly.
Representative Jonathan Devers provides feedback on their proposed legislation to Arianna, Jorden, Jayson, and bill sponsor David .
Legislative Aide Justin Hucke helps Rose, Cheyanne and Medina work out the details on their child abuse prevention bill.
Bill sponsor Dwayne Wilkins and his team consult with Rep. Dever on how to find support and resources for their proposed legislation.
When: Thursday, 14 May 2015, 4:30 - 6:30 Where: Winton Woods High School Lobby
What: #agswarriors have been working with members of the Ohio General Assembly to craft legislation on issues that are of concern to them. On Thursday, May 14 students will present their issues in a public forum to members of the community.
In addition to an in-class workshop with Rep. Dever, students have been working with other General Assembly members, interest groups, academics and professionals to craft legislation covering public health issues, child abuse in day cares, teen mental health, standardized testing, and transgender rights, among other issues.
In addition to these experts, students have invited community members and concerned parties to a community forum on public policy, where they will pitch their legislation with a Public Service Announcement and supporting information for their legislation.
Please come out and see the great work of #agswarriors!
Student choice and purposeful grouping
Based on his or her interests, students researched standing committees in the Ohio General Assembly and requested their top choices which committee to serve on. Once committees were selected, each student's proposed legislation was sent to the appropriate committee where it was researched and discussed. Each committee then recommended at least one bill to be refined and amended for the Public Policy Forum.
The sponsors of the successful bills then conducted interviews of the remaining students. Sponsors wanted to choose supporters for their bills based on two criteria: who truly felt passionate or had prior experience with the topic of the bill, or those who had experience and skill with the future elements of the project: connecting with professionals, public speaking, persuasive skills, and creating a PSA.
Once the interviews were conducted, each bill sponsor was able to make an offer to up to three potential group members. Some students received multiple offers; others received none. Students could choose to accept an offer or ally themselves with others to revive a dead bill or create something new. Students with no offers could lobby on their own behalf to join an existing group or form their own to create new legislation.
Draft Day: Incorporating Student Choice into Group-Making
We first randomly selected the team captains. We did this in the least-techy, least interesting way possible: selecting numbers that match our roster. There were eight team captains in our first block and five in the second. The team captains ranged from student athletes, 4.0 students, struggling students, exchange students, and students on IEPS. There were plenty of other ways considered rather than random selection. We first thought that perhaps we would base it on academics, the last quiz grade, the last essay grade, or perhaps the best scores in our “agency” category for the class. Ultimately, we felt having a random selection was the best way to experiment. We felt that choosing top students in certain categories would prevent them from working with each other.
Next, we ordered the team captains. Yup, you guessed it: random selection. We printed all the team captain names, mixed them up face-down, and then pulled them at random.
Finally, we selected a group of our top students and had them “rank” each other. Every student was placed in at least one of the following categories: best collaborator, best team leader, most creative, best with technology, best public speaker, best writer, best attitude, and most opinionated. We felt these categories were the most relevant to the current project. These were distributed the day before the draft, so not only the team captains could see the rankings, but also students could see which categories they were placed.
As we distributed the ranking page, several students were upset, claiming they should have been in other categories. This sprang the idea of launching a 24 hour Twitter campaign, using the #AGSdraft. We quickly created an assignment for students to create a school Twitter account. We emphasized the benefits of having a positive digital footprint. Next, students were required to tweet at least three times, persuading the team captains to draft them first. We also required the team captains to tweet questions at the others about what they were looking for in teammates.
The Twitter campaigns were great! They also tweeted live during the draft, making it even more exciting. Students were excitedly tweeting the morning of draft day. They wanted to be the number one overall pick, so they were doing some serious shameless self-promotion. One of our assistant principals also started tweeting using the #agsdraft as well as my co-teacher and me. The level of competition was heightened by incorporating Twitter. Even during the draft, students were tweeting.
We made a draft board that took up the majority of our chalkboard. We printed out the team captains and got sticky name tags to write the rest of the student names. We arranged these on the table similar to the ranking page and called up the team captains one by one, in drafting order.
We played music throughout the draft, including Europe’s “The Final Countdown” and House of Pain’s “Jump Around”. It was incredibly loud in our room, as we encouraged cheering and clapping during the draft. We used a microphone to announce each team captain’s draft pick and placed the sticker on the draft board. Here’s a picture of our final board:
As they examine the relationship between information, incentives, the power of data, and bias, Freakonomics will provide AGS Warriors with some new perspective on the way society works.
"Hola chicos! Escribo desde República Dominicana, este, me parece un excelente proyecto, todo muy fabuloso. Espero que sigan creciendo. Gracias por compartir sus ideas con nosotros. Esto muy encantada! PD: Estudio en el Liceo experimental O&M."
"Wow, what a great way to marry popular music within an historic context. I love that there is an Australian representation in your playlist as well as The Pogues. In fact, a great cross section of musical genre covered. Another interesting inclusion could have been 'From little things, big things grow' (Paul Kelly/Kev Carmody) which tells the story of Vincent Lingari, an indigenous Australian who stood up to Lord Vesty, a British Aristocrat and owner of one of the biggest properties in Australia. Lingari and his fellow workers were basically paid in flour and basic goods, like blankets, and went on strike until their land was returned to them and thus started the Land Rites movement in Australia during the latter part of the 20th Century. Great job to everyone involved." John O'Sullivan Teacher - Nagle College Bairnsdale, Victoria, Australia.