Community supports trips to statehouse
To the Editor:
This letter is long overdue, but time gets away from us all sometimes. My name is Rebecca Mayfield and I am the government and economics teacher at Linton-Stockton High School. I have been working here for three years, having come from Clay County before that.
Upon starting at Linton, as a way to make civics and politics more “real” to my students, I started taking a field trip to the Indiana Statehouse. Getting to see the statehouse in person, meet legislators, enter the chambers of the houses and offices of elected state officials like the governor, lieutenant governor, and Secretary of State makes it an eye-opening experience for 17 and 18-year-olds just getting started in their involvement in civics and politics. Being there and seeing our state government in action is a great experience.
Because these field trips don’t happen for free, or without support, I am writing this letter to publicly thank people that have helped, financially, or otherwise, make this trip possible. To date, I have taken approximately 150 students and will be taking about 45 more in April of 2019. I appreciate all of the help and support for this trip!
People and groups responsible for helping make this trip possible:
Greene County Republican Party -- Extreme thanks to Paul Clark, who has the same vision as I do when it comes to exposing our youth to politics and government, and upon request, took my request for funding to the rest of the party in their monthly meeting in 2017. I do not know the other members of the county party committee, but I am thankful to them as well. The Greene County Republicans sponsored the April 2018 trip and are again sponsoring the spring trip in April of 2019.
Linton City Council -- Mayor John Wilkes, Clerk-Treasurer Jathan Wright, and council members Linda Bedwell, Jerry Ellett, Fred Markle, Tony Richards and Jeff Sparks approved and paid for the November 2018 trip, and have offered future support.
Linda Bedwell and Jathan Wright have also attended the trip as adult chaperones on two separate trips.
Jeff Ellington, our District 62 state representative, has also gone above and beyond to meet and talk to my students on three of our four visits. There were two of the visits where Jeff came to Indianapolis when the House was NOT in session, making the drive there from Bloomington just to meet and greet my students. I hope to be able to see Jeff again on our visit in April of 2019!
Linton Stockton High School Administration -- Including all of them over the last few years, Nathan Moore, Nick Karazsia, Alicia Cornelius, and Dr. Kathryn Goad for approving and allowing me to take our students for this beneficial, educational trip.
Mrs. Helen Carroll, our bus driver for most of our trips, has been an awesome, patient woman, putting up with 30-50 teenagers on each trip and for braving downtown Indianapolis traffic. She also doesn’t ever get to attend the tour because there is no parking in downtown for buses so she has to park at the Zoo and kill a couple of hours before coming back to pick us up.
And lastly, but not least, my friend, counterpart, and mentor from Clay County, Penny Arthur. Penny is the department chair in Clay City and did this same trip with her government students during my time there, which is where I got the idea. I never got to accompany Penny on any of her trips, but I always wanted to and told myself if I ever taught government, I would do the same with my students. Thank you for being a great role model, Penny!
Rebecca D. Mayfield
Linton Stockton High School
Teacher of Government, Economics, AP Government, AP Microeconomics, Indiana Studies and Current Events and Problems