Wieghing in on the Issues 'Notnef' Elections Teach Students Political Process

By Kmitch, Justin | Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), November 7, 2006 | Go to article overview

Wieghing in on the Issues 'Notnef' Elections Teach Students Political Process


Kmitch, Justin, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)


Byline: Justin Kmitch Daily Herald Staff Writer

None of the juniors in Fenton High School's American Heritage class are old enough to vote for Rod or Judy today.

But that's not the race they're interested in.

Today, Fenton seniors will wade through campaign fliers, posters and commercials before voting to determine which student from George Mussman's and Mike Mitchell's class will lead the fictional country of Notnef.

That's Fenton spelled backward.

During the past month, the juniors have studied political campaigns and elections, including the current gubernatorial races. They've also volunteered for their choice of campaigns to get a feel for the process.

"We're lucky to have the class coincide with the elections every couple of years," Mussman said. "It really brings issues closer to home and hopefully puts things in perspective for some of these students, who may be able to vote within a year."

Since September, students have run simulated campaigns complete with literature, posters in the school halls and even a mock debate held Wednesday at the village hall in Bensenville.

Throughout the week, seniors watched the campaign videos and took notice of the posters adorning Fenton's halls.

The candidates took the campaign seriously and said they're eager to see who comes out on top.

"We all spent a lot of time and energy researching our platforms and making sure we sounded intelligent on our issues," said candidate Frankie Lazzara. "I, personally, learned a little about a bunch of topics. …

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