“I am voting for Romney because he is helping Staples and Sports Authority and others. He did mess up when he started making speeches but he has messed up less than Obama,” said Robby, who is in third grade.
At Belen Jesuit Preparatory School in West Miami-Dade, students held a mock election using an electronic ballot, designed by the social studies and technology departments at the all-boys school, grades 6-12.
Romney won at Belen, too — with 66 percent of the vote in an election held Monday.
“We didn’t endorse any candidates,” said Patrick Collins, social studies department chairman. “We didn’t change the language to make it easier. It was the same content that was on the real ballot.”
Matthew Pastor, 16, who voted for Obama despite his parents being Republicans, was one of the many students that turned on their iPads to access a link in their email, where they were given an access code for the ballot.
The mock election was conducted through Survey Monkey, an online survey and questionnaire tool that guaranteed that each student voted once. Miami-Dade public school students also voted via Survey Monkey.
“Through this program we avoid students from going back and making multiple votes,” said Carol Vila, Belen’s director of technology. “Had we not used Survey Monkey, we probably wouldn’t have been able to prevent students from going back and voting again.”
Even though the school tested the program three weeks prior to elections, paper ballots were used as back-up.
“It was a very easy to do,” said Pastor, “and it is preparing students like me that will vote in the next real election to become familiarized with the process.”