JSA Winter Congress Update
JSA Winter Congress Update
Posted on 02/19/2014
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The Danville High School JSA attended the National Winter Congress and it was a record-breaking success! Here are the highlights:

  • 15 students participated, equaling our largest contingent (2009).
  • 4 of the 5 bills we wrote and submitted were among the 67 included on the docket for debate. They were written and sponsored by Andrew McKinney and Austin Barringer, Hibah Siddiqui and Eric Matherly, Emma Jackson and Jacob Rankin, and Griffin Ross and a BCHS student.
  • Hibah and Eric's bill passed in the House but was narrowly defeated in the Senate committee.
  • The other 3 bills were among the 21 bills that passed out of committee to be debated again in the full House and Senate. This is the first time DHS has had 3 bills pass out of committee!
  • Andrew and Austin's bill was narrowly defeated in the full House and Senate.
  • The other 2 bills were among the 13 bills that passed! This is the first time DHS has passed 2 bills at a Winter Congress! Since our first WC in 2007, we have had a total of 2 bills pass -- until this weekend when we doubled our total, thanks to Emma, Jacob, Griffin, and Talha. Considering the large number of schools that participate, we were pleased that 4 of our bills made the docket, thrilled that 3 of them passed out of committee, and ecstatic that 2 of them became JSA law. It is HIGHLY unusual for one school to have 3 bills pass out of committee, and even more rare for one school to have multiple bills pass the full House and Senate.
  • Austin Barringer not only sponsored a bill, he was selected to be a Democratic Party Whip. As such, he floated through various committees speaking for or against several bills in order to promote the party platform.
  • Emma Jackson not only sponsored a bill that passed, she was also named the best speaker in her committee for the 2nd year in a row. PLUS she chaired the publicity team AND she arranged for the keynote speaker -- the White House Director of Public Engagement Kyle Lierman. (Yes, the same person who headed the White House Youth Summit in December.)

They were also able to tour the Capitol and the monuments, visit the Air and Space Museum and the Natural History Museum, see the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence at the Archives, eat dinner at the historic Old Ebbitt Grill around the corner from the White House, and master the Metro system. It was a fantastic trip!