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Los Angeles Unified Encourages Voter Registration (09-24-19)


LOS ANGELES (Sept. 24, 2019) - Noting the impact that young voters can have on election outcomes, the Los Angeles Board of Education unanimously adopted a resolution today supporting voter registration efforts across Los Angeles Unified.

Graphic reads, "Are you registered to vote?" Sponsored by Board Member Dr. George J. McKenna III and co-sponsored by all board members, the resolution calls for voter registration cards to be distributed to all high school seniors and for election materials to be made available at high schools, adult schools and parent centers. The board also declared today as LAUSD National Voter Registration Day.

"Our democracy relies on the participation of all who can vote," Superintendent Austin Beutner said. "In particular, we want to encourage all in the communities we serve, including our students, to register and to vote."

Board Member Dr. McKenna said, “Young people should register to vote as soon as they are eligible. I encourage all Los Angeles Unified teens, as well as all California teens, to pre-register at age 16 so that their file is automatically activated when they turn 18 years old. Building lifelong voters begins early, and is the first building block to expand an electorate that is truly committed to participatory government.”

"As the world faces a multitude of crisis situations – some of which will take several generations to address – it is more critical than ever to ensure that the generation(s) that will be facing these challenges the longest be brought into the discussion and made aware of their future civic duties,” Board President Dr. Richard Vladovic said. “A democratic society can function only as long as people are both active participants in the process, and have faith that their will and voices can and will be heard. I wholeheartedly support this resolution."

“We all were inspired by the courage and dedication of our young people who gathered all over the world to tell us we must do more to end the climate crisis,” Board Vice President Jackie Goldberg said. “Protests are critical. Voting is another important tool to keep our elected officials accountable for their actions or inactions.”

“Our youth are leading the way for change and progress,” Board Member Mónica García said. “I am proud to support this resolution because it helps all students know that their vote and their voice matter. It is powerful to see the excitement in our young people to get involved in the democratic process!”

“Now, more than ever, we need to make sure that our young adults understand the importance of voting and participating in the civic life of our communities and country,” Board Member Scott M. Schmerelson said. “We must never forget that our public schools are the cornerstones for supporting and maintaining American democracy by ensuring that future generations are fully prepared to function as informed citizens who understand and value freedom and democracy in a civil society.”

“Our students have shown us that they want to get involved and they want to take part in our country’s democratic process,” Board Member Nick Melvoin said. “We need to foster that sense of civic engagement from a young age to support our next generation of leaders.”

“I’ve seen so many of our young people become activists to address gun violence, climate change, LGBTQ rights and much more,” Board Member Kelly Gonez said. “By exercising your right to vote, you are pushing for the changes you want to see in your communities and in the nation. I encourage every student to register to vote and get out to the polls in 2020 and beyond.”