The library at Leo A. Palmiter Jr./Sr. High School became a temporary polling place on October 30 as Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) students cast ballots in the 2012 MyVote California Student Mock Election.
Students from the Palmiter campus and the neighboring Elinor Lincoln Hickey Jr./Sr. High School voted on who they think should be President, Vice President, and U.S. Senator. They also voted on the ballot measures that will come before California voters in the November 6 General Election. Students participating in the Mock Election said they learned some valuable life lessons.
"I think it's important because it helps us learn about life. It made me feel like I'm growing up fast," said Palmiter student Michael Allen.
"I felt like I was able to make my own decision even though it wasn't going to the actual election. It made me feel like I was responsible enough to make that decision," said Palmiter student Amara Vader.
The MyVote California Student Mock Election, in conjunction with the California Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools, provides students with an election season opportunity to make their voices heard on the candidates and issues that affect them and their families.
"For our students, this is not only a lesson in civics and civic responsibility, it's about showing them ways that they can make a difference by being part of the political process," said Palmiter Principal Lauren Roth. "The voting booth can often be intimidating and mock elections can give students a feel for what it's like to get involved in a 'real' election."
During the Mock Elections, students can compare their voting results to those of their peers around the state. They also can compare their decisions to those made by adult voters. The overall goal of the program is to help middle school and high school students discover the importance of elections and the power of their votes in our democracy.
"It's good for our young people to realize they have the potential to be a force in elections and, when they are old enough, they need to make voting a habit," said Hickey Principal Lisa Alcalá. "Mock elections give students an introduction to the political process and show them how they can make their voices heard in our democracy."
This year, more than 100,000 California high school students participated in the MyVote California Student Mock election. They joined millions of young mock election voters in other states in an impressive display of student opinion on the candidates and issues affecting the future of our state and nation.
Palmiter Jr./Sr. High School provides education to special needs students with the primary disability of Emotional Disturbance (ED). Hickey Jr./Sr. High School is a community school providing students an opportunity to continue their education and experience significant positive personal change in their lives.