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Ms. Cahill to become a Walden Media film in ‘Class Act’ ?

May 25th, 2009 by Paul Martin

In the next few days, Reno teacher Tierney Cahill is expecting a package in the mail that will add another chapter to an already remarkable story that started a decade ago with a dare from a group of skeptical sixth-graders.

In 1999, Cahill was a sixth-grade teacher at Sarah Winnemucca Elementary School, and during a civics lesson, she explained to her class that that in the United States, anyone can run for political office.

Her students didn’t buy it.

Maybe if you’re rich, but not if you’re a “normal” person, they contended.

Cahill persisted with her reasoning, citing the Constitution. But the kids pushed right back and put their teacher on the hot seat. If that is truly the case, they asked, why didn’t she run for office?

The details of the campaign including some ugly realities of politics in modern-day America can be found in Cahill’s wonderful book “Ms. Cahill For Congress,” which came out late last year. It’s available in all the local bookstores and has received a lot of national buzz.

Which brings us to the package that Cahill is expecting in the mail.

It is a movie script for “Class Act,” based on “Ms. Cahill for Congress” which will star Halle Berry. It is in the hands of Walden Media, which has produced such films as “The Chronicles of Narnia.”

“We’re hoping that this week, they’ll be sending it to Halle Berry and myself to review, and then they would start scheduling production,” she said. “It looks like we’re really close.”

She hopes the film can be shot on location in Reno and she’s pushing for it to premiere here as well.

“I want it in Reno where the kids can be there,” she said. “I feel like they’re really the ones that deserve to walk down that red carpet and be there.”

That truly would complete the lesson started a decade ago.

Read the complete story at RGJ.com