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What would happen if kids decided the Kelowna civic election?

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November 18, 2014 - 7:31 PM

KELOWNA – If civic elections were decided by underage students, the results would be quite different according to a new program that teaches young people about the democratic process.

Student Vote is a Canada-wide civic education program that combines classroom lectures with news dissemination followed by an in-school vote on election day. As of noon on November 15, 29,286 students cast their “ballots” in 276 schools around B.C.

Colin Basran, who won the mayor’s seat by a large margin, also received the most student votes -  481 compared with Sharon Shepherd’s 235. However Sam Condy, a teenage candidate who admits he wasn’t even a serious candidate, received only ten fewer votes than runner-up Shepherd, a two term mayor and former councillor with decades of leadership experience.

Mark Thompson, who finished third in the civic election, surprisingly received the second fewest student votes. Even Glendon Smedley, who was unable to coherently answer basic questions regarding the budget, placed ahead of Thompson in the student poll.

If underage students in B.C. had their way, Bobby Kennedy, who finished 18th out of 31 candidates, would have taken the third seat on council.

For council, students chose social media pro and Festivals Kelowna program coordinator Ryan Donn as their favourite. Gail Given and Mohini Singh, although easily elected by voters, would be looking for a new job if students made the decision. Brad Sieben, who voters placed fifth, also would not have been elected.

Beryl Itani came close to taking the eighth seat on council Saturday but went virtually unnoticed in the youth vote. She landed in the bottom quarter despite her years of public service and high profile heroics during the 2003 Kelowna Mountain fire.

Both students and voters put most Taxpayers First and Prosper Kelowna candidates well out of contention.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Adam Proskiw at or call 250-718-0428. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014
InfoTel News Ltd

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