Be Engaged During High School Voter Education Weeks!
By Eleanor Love, Sacramento County Youth Commission Chair and Senior at C.K. McClatchy
April’s High School Voter Education Weeks have begun, and every student can make a difference! Youth involvement is especially imperative as the 2022 midterms approach.
What are High School Voter Education Weeks?
California Education Code designates the last two complete weeks of April and September as High School Voter Education Weeks. During these weeks, SCUSD plans to promote civic engagement, voter registration, and voter pre-registration among its high school students. The Sacramento County Youth Commission collaborates with SCUSD and other local school districts annually to conduct outreach to students.
What is pre-registration? How can I pre-register to vote?
- California and thirteen other states allow 16- and 17-year olds to pre-register to vote, meaning that they can register early. While this doesn’t change the voting age, it allows teenagers to be completely prepared to cast a ballot when they turn 18.
- All pre-registered individuals will automatically be sent a mail ballot when they turn 18.
- Studies conducted by Harvard’s Shorenstein Center show that pre-registration increases the likelihood of voting by up to 13 percentage points.
- You can pre-register to vote at this link.
I’m 18. How can I register to vote? What else should I know?
- 18-year olds can register to vote at this link.
- The 2022 primary midterm elections are fast approaching. Mail ballots will automatically be sent out to all registered California voters during the first week of May. You can return your ballot via mail, drop it off at a secure drop box, return your ballot at a vote center, or vote in person at a vote center.
- To find vote center and ballot drop off locations in your area, view the County Elections website.
How can I check my registration status?
- Check your registration status at this link.
What else can I do?
Civic duties don’t end at the ballot box. If you’re looking for other means to be involved, you can…
- Be a poll worker for the 2022 primary midterm elections. View poll working opportunities in Sacramento County at this link.
- If you’re 16 or 17 and you’d like to be a poll worker, fill out this application (make sure a parent/guardian signs it) and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Apply to be on the Sacramento County Youth Commission. Email Commission Jillian Myers at email@example.com for an application.
- Attend a Civic Education Class to learn more. Sign up for the class at this link.