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Kids in charge

Seven fourth graders at Jemison Elementary School enjoyed special privileges Wednesday as they were rewarded for reaching the 500-point mark in the accelerated reading program.

Each student must take a test on the books they read, and if they score 80 percent or better, they are credited with points based on the reading level.

Once the students reach 500 points, they are given the title “principal for the day” and do various tasks and receive special privileges.

“They’ve been working on this since first grade,” JES principal Louise Pitts said.

The honorary principals were Daly Anderson, Mason Beaman, Caleb Bright, Caleb Hayes, Katelyn Lambert, Kayla Lowrey and Dylan Payton.

Beaman and fellow fourth-grader Trevor Porter were also honored Friday as “librarians of the day” for reaching 750 points.

Pitts said the “principal for the day” program started four years ago and had one “principal” at the end of the year and has grown each year since.

The students were honored in front of the school as a motivation for other students to continue reading.

“The other students knew there was a challenge,” Pitts said.

Popular among the “principals” were the Eragon series by Christopher Paolini and the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling.

“J.K. Rowling is a fantastic author,” Bright said. “And I just love her books.”

The seven “principals” were busy Wednesday morning, helping with the first-grade field day, gathering information from teachers for parents about class parties and giving out awards.

“We did announcements in the morning; we patrolled the halls,” Anderson said.

Pitts was grateful to have extra help on a busy day.

“They’ve been really good,” Pitts said. “They’ve been really helpful.”