NORWOOD, MASS. (WHDH) - A local high school class has been getting a taste of the legislative process after helping create a bill proposing Massachusetts have an official state ice cream flavor.
It all started when students at Norwood High School learning about the state’s official symbols found the state doesn’t have an official ice cream.
“When we had been doing our state lessons, the kids had each taken a turn looking at different aspects of Massachusetts government and they had spent a lot of time looking at state symbols, and realized that here was no state ice cream flavor,” said Norwood High teacher Jennifer Orlinski.
The US Government class soon got to work, making phone calls and writing letters to lawmakers and ice cream distributors.
After more than a month of research, they scooped a proposed flavor: Cookies and Cream.
“The whole idea, in concept, of mixing a flavor into an ice cream such as cookies and cream or chocolate chip even, came from Boston,” Norwood student David Maturo told 7NEWS.
The class then undertook a lesson in legislating, turning their idea into a bill. They also got the support of State Representative John Rogers, D-Norwood, who is now sponsoring H.3017 “An Act establishing the official ice cream flavor of the Commonwealth.”
He also stopped by and met with some of the students this week.
“If you think that this bill is really non-controversial, why, I remember the 1977 debate on the official state cookie,” the lawmaker told the class during a visit.
Rogers told 7NEWS he loved the idea the students were advocating, and how they were getting a chance to learn more about how a bill becomes a law, or how it can come up short.
“I love it – it’s a fun, yet very educational way for students to learn first-hand about the legislative process and how a bill becomes or does not become a law,” he said.
For now, the students wait.
“I’ve learned that this process takes a lot of time,” Maturo said. “It’s definitely not quick, it’s not easy and it’s a lot of steps.”
The bill is still in its early phases, having recently been referred to the committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight. It also enjoys support from at least eight other lawmakers, according to the legislature’s website.
A full list of the official symbols for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts can be found here.
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