Although it's a few years until they are eligible to run for office, Thomson Middle School pupils recently made plans for what they'd do if they were mayor.
"I wrote about trying to fix the roads in Thomson because they need it," said Patrice Rogers, who won first place in the annual "If I Were Mayor" essay contest.
Sponsored by the Georgia Municipal Association, the state-wide essay contest challenges sixth-graders to creatively use grade-specific language arts skills and civics/social studies knowledge. For the contest kick-off in March, Thomson Mayor Kenneth Usry and Dearing Mayor Sean Kelley went to the school to tell the students about their jobs as mayor and to encourage their participation in the essay contest.
"We had to learn the responsibilities of being mayor and how hard it is to be mayor," said Allison Murphy, who placed second in the contest.
Teacher Mary E. Johnson said the students were surprised to learn how little Thomson's mayor is paid, because he's part-time, and how he has no control over what retail or restaurant businesses come to town.
As first place winner on the local level, Patrice received a $100 savings bond, Allison received a $50 savings bond, and third place winner Meghan Garrett received a $25 bond. Each of the participants received a $5 gift card to Subway.