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  1. Dear Teacher:
    I am contacting you to invite you and your students to participate in a simulation of the American presidential election. The simulation will take place from early-September through late-November 2016 and will be administered by me, Andrew J. Taylor, Professor of Political Science at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.A. It is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of State through its embassy in London.
    The simulation is available, free of charge, to a group or groups of sixth-form students (Years 12 and 13) from schools and colleges, both state-run and private, within the U.K. Each group will have a faculty supervisor and can be of any size that supervisor feels is appropriate—I suspect groups of 4-8 will be ideal. The simulation is intended to build a greater understanding of American politics and public life and help students acquire and develop skills critical to academic success, effective citizenship, and careers in fields related to politics and public policy. It will provide a useful supplement to courses that touch upon the United States and politics more generally. Students will not be “marked” or their performance, either collectively or individually, formally evaluated by me.
    In short, each group will choose a candidate and, after researching this individual and the broader American political landscape, build media, fundraising, and general campaign strategies designed to capture a party nomination and win the general election. The simulation will take place on a software platform called Moodle.
    Students will need an Internet connection and computer or mobile device to participate. If your school is interested, please respond with an e-mail stating this and provide (1) the name and location of the school and (2) name and information (at least an e-mail address) of a faculty or staff contact. Each school needs at least one faculty/staff contact, but can have multiple groups of student participants.
    Space is limited, however, so please reply as soon as possible with the number of groups you would like to participate. I will try to accommodate as many groups from as many schools as possible.
    Please send your response to: Include “U.S. Presidential Election Simulation” in the subject line. I will reply with more details about the simulation and instructions about how to secure your participation by July 15.
    I understand that I may not have contacted the faculty or staff member at your school who would be most interested in this opportunity. If that is the case, I would greatly appreciate you passing along this invitation to that person(s).
    Sincerely Yours,
    Andrew J. Taylor

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