In East Texas schools, history and government classes look to Tuesday's election - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


In East Texas schools, history and government classes look to Tuesday's election

From the breakroom to the classroom, there's been has been a lot of talk today about America's first African-American president. Schools and teachers nationwide talked about last night's election, including here in East Texas. KLTV 7's Danielle Capper went to a history class and a government class and has this story of history in the making.

In Dixi Russell's history class this afternoon, Arp 8th graders discussed living through history.

"I have never seen as many people vote as they did yesterday. Everybody wanted to get out and wanted to vote. Why? What was so special about this election...the first black president," said Russell.

She challenged her students to think about the change Obama promises and the future of our country.

"What was the historical relevance of last night? Tell me," she asked her students.

"Here we are in history every single day learning all this stuff, and the only time we talk about a black person is like in black history. Then we talk about George Washington and Abraham Lincoln and things. My kids and my grandkids are going to be looking at the first black president. I was in 8th grade when we got the first black president," said Erika Fluellen proudly.

"Someday I will be telling my children, yes, I was in the 8th grade when the first black president was elected," said Mason Bobbitt.

At TISD in John Tyler High School, Ms. Heidrick's 12th grade government glass also discussed it.

"We have a two party system...there are some people that are Republicans and some people that are Democrats."

She explained the electoral college, and how last night's votes and swing states weighed in.

"That's how he chose his career, and now he's the President-elect of the United States of America."

They talked about Obama's life, how he was raised by his grandmother - and that it's not where you start, it's where you end up.

"I hope that when they start having kids they will remember when they were in government class that they have to tell both sides of the story before the ending can be written," said Heidricks.

"It'll definitely be a part of history," said Jelicia Smith.

It's a day they'll will remember forever - and a day other kids will read about in the history books for years to come.

Danielle Capper, reporting.


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