Local Politics Assignment

This assignment is worth 10% of your total grade. You have two options for what you do to complete this assignment.

Option 1:

1. Attend a school board meeting. 

2. Take handwritten notes on what happens at the meeting. Include with your notes a sketched diagram of the room where the event took place, showing who was sitting where. It's okay if you identify people by their position/office if you don't know everyone's name.

3. Write a paragraph answer to each of the following questions (4 paragraphs total).

  • What surprised you about the experience?
  • What was your impression of the politicians who represent you in local government?
  • What was your impression of the people – the citizens, not the politicians – who attended the event?
  • Can you imagine your future self as a local policymaker?

Turn in your notes and answers to the questions within two days of the meeting you attend. If you attend a meeting on a Wednesday, your assignment is due in class on Friday.

Option 2:

1. Interview a local elected official -- a school board member, city council member or mayor, or a county official (supervisor, auditor, treasurer, recorder, sheriff, or county attorney) -- to learn more about what they do. You must do a face-to-face interview -- no email interviews or phone interviews. 

Grinnell-Newburg Board of Education        Grinnell Mayor & City Council

Poweshiek County        Jasper County        Tama County

2. Use your computer or phone to make an audio recording of the interview. Use the recording to compose a transcript of your interview -- your questions followed by your interviewee's answers. Turn in your interview transcript and a photograph of you with the person you interview (selfies work).