Wayland wins Civics Bee

Thomas Chan and Nandita Subbiah

Pictured above are participants in the annual Civics Bee. From left: Wendy Mishara, Andy Wang and Will Sharton. The Wayland team won, beating the Sudbury and Weston teams.

The League of Women Voters (LWV) hosted the seventh annual Civics Bee at Wayland High School this Sunday. Three teams from Wayland, Weston and Sudbury participated in the competition. Teams consisted of middle and high school students and adults.

The competition had six rounds and a scored group project during the audience intermission. Each round had a different topic concerning civics. The topics were as follows: voting, judicial branch, executive branch, legislative branch, lighting round and civil rights.

Questions pertained not only to national government but also to local government. This tournament’s group project was to order the events of the Civil Rights Movement in chronological order. The league chose this project to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, which was the theme of the bee.

The lightning round consisted of questions with numbers as the answers. This round was scored based on the number of correctly answered questions in the given time.

The bee was judged by Richard Albert, an assistant professor at the Boston College School of Law. Albert decided which responses were correct or would receive credit if not answered as thoroughly as possible.

Question types included short answer, multiple choice, true or false and quote identification.

The top scoring team switched between Wayland and Sudbury throughout the match. In the end, Wayland won the bee by five points, the smallest margin in all seven years of this bee. Wayland scored 606 points, and Sudbury and Weston ended with 601 and 599 points, respectively.

All participants received pocket constitutions, certificates and pins. Wayland received a trophy for their victory.

The high school team’s coaches were history department head Kevin Delaney and history teacher Eva Urban-Hughes. The team consisted of seniors Elizabeth Chafe, Darby Douros, Whitney Halperin, Julia Herbordt, Anna Hubbell, Charlie Nuss, Ben Porter, William Sharton, Ben Verdi and Piper Wolff.

“Every single member of the Civics Bee is actually part of my AP Politics and Government online course that I’m offering,” Urban-Hughes said. “They have been preparing for this over the course of an entire year and most recently they have been preparing specifically for the Bee, especially the local history part by creating online wiki pages and cheat sheets.”

The Wayland Middle School students were coached by WMS social studies teachers Jacob Montwieler and Matthew McCormack. Team members included Jackson Lieb, Henry Stafford and Andy Wang.

Wayland’s adult team consisted of Tom Gennis, Wendy Mishara and Alan Reiss.

Test your knowledge with questions from the bee!

1. In 1935 and 1936 the Supreme Court declared that important parts of the New Deal were unconstitutional. President Roosevelt responded by threatening to:
A) Impeach several Supreme Court justices.
B) Reduce the pay of the Supreme court justices.
C) Appoint additional Supreme Court justices who shared his views.
D) Request that Congress override the Supreme Court’s decisions.

2. Which argument did the authors of the United States Constitution use when they insisted that revenue bills originate in the House of Representatives?
A) Direct popular elections would make members of the House more responsive to the wishes of voters who paid taxes.
B) Members of the House would have a superior understanding of economics.
C) The national budget should be determined solely by the House of Representatives
D) Political parties would have less influence on Members of the House than on Senators.

3. How many women are in the current US House of Representatives?

Answer Key:
1. C
2. A
3. 84