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All-Candidates Debate at Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute

Candidates running in the riding of Kingston attended an all-candidates debate at Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute (KCVI) on Tuesday.

All-candidates debates have been held by many Student Vote teachers during this campaign period, providing tens of thousands of Canadian students the opportunity to take their local candidates to task on the issues being raised in this year’s election.

The event, organized by KCVI citizenship teacher, Katherine Graham Burra, was done in conjunction with her school’s participation in the 2015 federal Student Vote program. Katherine is one of 7,500 teachers from every riding in Canada to register and provide their students with the opportunity to cast a ballot this week.

The debate featured the following candidates (in alphabetical order): Andy Brooke (Conservative), Daniel Beals (NDP), Mark Gerretsen (Liberal), and Nathan Townend (Green).

After the event, Katherine received an encouraging note from Peter Loock, a parent of two KCVI students. Peter wrote,

My two daughters came home and started talking about politics, party platforms, social policies, and the Canadian economy like I have never seen before. We debated the Syrian refugee crisis, vote splitting, coalition governments, proportional representation vs. first-past-the-post electoral systems into the late evening.

 You have probably done more to engage future voters yesterday, than what could have been achieved in a year of social media campaigns. I find this especially remarkable and generous of you, because none of these kids can actually vote (…yet…).

 So, thank you again for taking the time in this extremely busy week. And a special thanks to KCVI for hosting this event. I only wish the debate was recorded or broadcast – my daughters thought it was very entertaining.

When we spoke to Peter, he added,

Teaching our children how to ask the right questions and how to be critical about the answers they are getting, prepares them so well to become responsible citizens. I am very impressed with CIVIX and Student Vote and believe that you have an important function!

We are thankful for all of our participating teachers and want to give a special mention to the teachers who helped organize these all-candidate debates.

Kingston’s Station 14 covered the KCVI Student Vote and has the story available here (with some great comments from students!):

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