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Use your voice, pre-register to vote: AP Government class hosts voter registration drive

Students+are+passionate+about+speaking+their+minds.
Students are passionate about speaking their minds.

Students are passionate about speaking their minds.

Courtesy of Google Images (by Katie Buckleitner)

Courtesy of Google Images (by Katie Buckleitner)

Students are passionate about speaking their minds.

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For the first time, SCHS hosted a voter registration drive today to automatically sign up students as voters when they turn 18. They will also hold another session tomorrow, Friday, Oct. 26. Any interested student can drop by the SBO during lunch to register or learn more about the voting process.

SCHS AP Government class is in charge of the drive and allows students 16 and older to register. They require some form of identification – a driver’s license or the last 4 digits of their social security number. With this, a student can register to vote with help from trained students.

Pre-registering through the drive allows students to be ready when elections come around and give them a voice that is not always utilized. As soon as students turn 18 they will be a registered voter and receive election ballots. AP Government teacher Karen Henry hopes to prompt students to become active citizens.

“I really want to encourage civic engagement here at this school, and I think the voter registration drive is one-way to bring awareness,” Henry said.

If students do not get the chance to register the first time around, however, there will be further opportunities. Henry plans to have several chosen days throughout the year to allow students to register.

The idea for a voter registration drive came out of the California Mock Trials. The AP Government class was looking for a collective way to engage and teach students about the importance of participating in politics.

“I feel hopeful that we’ll get more citizens participating in the process and that’s what’s really best for society,” Henry said. “ It doesn’t matter who they vote for but for young people getting into the habit of voting.”

Henry believes that citizens want to vote but often do not know how. Registration varies depending on the state, but there are multiple ways to sign up. Registration can be completed online, through the DMV and sometimes in front of stores.

“I really want students to leave their high school feeling that they do have a voice,” Henry said. “They don’t have to be bystanders and just watch things happen.”

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Use your voice, pre-register to vote: AP Government class hosts voter registration drive