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Ag issues team to present to State Board of Education

The+Ag+Issues+team+will+progress+to+nationals+after+placing+first+in+state.
The Ag Issues team will progress to nationals after placing first in state.

The Ag Issues team will progress to nationals after placing first in state.

Jaren Tankersley

Jaren Tankersley

The Ag Issues team will progress to nationals after placing first in state.

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The Agricultural Issues team will present to the State Board of Education Friday, Sept. 16, after winning the Texas State competition in December 2015.

Agricultural Issues competitors research an agricultural issue, assemble a portfolio and deliver a 15 minute presentation highlighting both pros and cons of their stance on the issue. In addition, competitors usually enact a real debate from the agriculture community, assuming the roles of the people in the debate. As a result, Agricultural Issues stresses the importance of civility in debate.

“This is one of those contests that teaches students that it’s okay to have your own beliefs, and it’s okay to present them,” agriculture science teacher Jeffery Klose said. “But it’s still okay to be friends with the people on the other side of the issue as well.”

This comradery between debate sides can include members of the Agricultural Issues team themselves. Junior Chloe Kemp said different opinions even assist the team in competition.

“I am the only one who views genetically modified foods the way I do,” Kemp said. “Everyone else on the team disagrees with me. Just because we don’t believe the same way doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t get along.”

Students do not choose which side of the debate they represent. Junior Macey Thurman said the team’s difference of opinions provides a greater advantage because of the lack of options.

Just because we don’t believe the same way doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t get along.”

— Chloe Kemp, 11

“It teaches you to see the pro and con side of things, and you have to learn to defend both and understand both,” Thurman said. “Even though you may stand more with one, you still have to understand where people are coming from on both sides.”

Klose said the skills that the Agricultural Issues team displays do not only reflect on the team members, but on the Agricultural Science department of Canyon High as a whole.

“Being in front of that many people and showing them the level of students we have in our program really helps people to understand that it’s okay to take an ag class,” Klose said. “All these students are going to get tons of scholarship money and go to college, and a lot of what they’re doing through this contest is helping them get that scholarship money.”

Team members who graduated last year will take a week off from college to participate on the national level.

“It’s a great honor to present to the state board of education,” Kemp said. “I feel that not many people get to do that. We’ve all become very passionate about our ag issue, so it’s really cool to share what we’ve done and what we’ve learned with these people who are so high up.”

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1 Comment

One Response to “Ag issues team to present to State Board of Education”

  1. Chloe Kemp on September 21st, 2016 2:29 pm

    Great story Jaren!

    [Reply]

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




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Ag issues team to present to State Board of Education