Jan 3, 2014 - By Alejandra Silva, Staff WriterRiverton High School has a shot to compete in the We the People National Finals competition in April in Washington, D.C., after placing with five other teams in the statewide competition.
High schools in every state first compete within their schools to determine the class that will represent the school. At RHS, a group of seniors will go up against five other Wyoming high schools. Only one will advance to the national finals.
The competition consists of students answering questions and giving presentations on their knowledge, understanding and ability to apply constitutional principles. According to the program's website, they act as "experts on one of the six units of the We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution text."
Judges are usually legislators, attorneys or educators who engage in a question and answer session with the students to help them determine their knowledge of the subject.
In January, the Wyoming high schools will compete in Cheyenne to determine which group will represent the state. The RHS students have prepared their oral statements and answers and will continue to practice, said RHS social studies teacher Kristy Richmond.
She described the questions as "unbelievably challenging." If students get nervous or worried, Richmond said she explains that the judges' intent is not to break them down but to show interest in their education and celebrate what they have learned.
"They're happy that you're there and that you're interested," she said she tells students.
Richmond's American and Wyoming government course also provides college credit.
Roughly 48 students from RHS participated in the program.
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