WASHINGTON — Students from Incline High School won an award for the highest score for the best non-finalist team from the Western region at the 25th Anniversary “We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution” National Finals this past weekend.The Western region comprises Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Washington.The high school students competed against classes from 47 states, the District of Columbia and the Northern Mariana Islands in the three-day competition on the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights, during which they were required to apply constitutional principles and historical facts to contemporary situations.Milton Hyams coaches the Incline High School class, whose members include: Sam Canino, Michaela Castillo, Kyle Clouthier, Ryan Collins, Mitchell Comstock, Chloe Dodge, Jessica Floam, Mitchell Gehring, Chelsea Hollingsworth, Nick Iida, Nina Jolley, John Larson, Melissa Mossar, Patrick Murray, Justine Nelson, Tori O'Connor, Katelyn Offerdahl, Max Osborne, Lyonel Pfaender, Katiya Resney, Julia Severance, Nathan Shuey, Alexa Smith, Charlene Swick, Melanie Swick, Kelsey Tokunaga, Jordan Wright.Lincoln High School of Portland, Ore., won first place in the overall competition, with Maggie L. Walker Governor's School for Government and International Studies of Richmond, Va.; and Arcadia High School of Arcadia, Calif., placing second and third, respectively.Results were announced at an awards ceremony Monday evening before an audience of more than 1,400 students, teachers, coordinators, judges and other program participants.During the competition, students demonstrated their knowledge of the Constitution before simulated congressional committees made up of state supreme court judges, constitutional scholars, lawyers, public officials and We the People alumni. The first rounds of the hearings took place Saturday and Sunday. On Monday, the top-10 schools competed in actual congressional hearing rooms on Capitol Hill.The panel of judges tested the expertise of the classes on the six units of the We the People: The Citizen andamp; the Constitution textbook: What Are the Philosophical and Historical Foundations of the American Political System; How Did the Framers Create the Constitution; How Has the Constitution Been Changed to Further the Ideals Contained in the Declaration of Independence; How Have the Values and Principles Embodied in the Constitution Shaped American Institutions and Practices; What Rights Does the Bill of Rights Protect; and What Challenges Might Face American Constitutional Democracy in the Twenty-first Century?The We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution program provides an intensive curriculum that offers students comprehensive instruction on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and the principles and values they embody. The program is designed to promote an understanding of the rights and responsibilities of citizens in our constitutional democracy.
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