On the second day of a legislative session that introduced a squad of newcomers who had campaigned against disenfranchisement and corruption in Albany, the New York State legislature passed a sweeping raft of voter reforms that will establish the right for 16- and 17-year-olds to preregister to vote, among other critical changes . . . But how will these reforms be implemented and will there be adequate funding to do so?Read More
Many high school students are hunkered down now, studying for finals, finishing their term papers and planning for graduation and their future. For many, that future seems frightening amid reports of school shootings, climate change and increasing political polarization. They feel they have little to no control over the future of their community, state and nation.
But they do . . .
Arizona’s Maricopa County, home to Phoenix, has a population of over 4 million people, and approximately 119,000 of those residents are 16 and 17 years old. If they don’t already know it, we have some good news for them.Read More
Last week Tennessee joined states like Texas that throw up barriers to citizen-led voter registration drives. Despite ranking 45th in voter registration nationwide (and 49th in voter turnout), the new Tennessee law threatens people and organizations helping to register their fellow Tennesseans with fines and criminal charges for a wide range of potential violations.Read More
In under a month, a motivated group of juniors from Centennial High School in Compton, California showed me just how quickly students can affect change in their communities. I first met these students and their incredible teacher at a workshop The Civics Center led at USC in early March.Read More
I love it when high school students reach out with their thoughts on civic engagement. Last week was this: “I’m one week too young for Election Day. R.i.p. me.” Translation: “I want to have a voice. I feel powerless because I can’t vote yet. What can I do?”Read More
Why haven't we created an infrastructure for our democracy in which everyone is asked to participate?Read More
According to a new analysis released today by The Civics Center, as of February 2019, only 14% of 16- and 17-year olds in the state are pre-registered to vote. . . . The numbers show a modest increase over pre-registration numbers released in October 2018. Then, only 13% of California 16- and 17-year olds were pre-registered.Read More
I want to talk to you about something else that may well be the most important thing you do in your time in high school. I want to talk to you about voter registration. I want all of you to make sure that you and your friends will all be able to vote in 2020.Read More
One of the reasons I started The Civics Center was to help high schools get the resources they need to teach students about democracy and how our governmental institutions should work. One issue that can harm our democracy and that needs greater understanding is voter suppression.Read More
With the Spring semester now under way, we’re rolling out new resources to help promote voter registration in school communities around the country. Does your school have a voter registration drive scheduled this semester? Here are 5 easy ways to get started.Read More
Last semester, I volunteered to help with a local high school voter registration drive. I want to share my story and what I learned in the hopes that many other people will get involved in this effort this semester.Read More
In Washington state, the long road toward establishing pre-registration -- which will be available to all state 16- and 17-year-olds on July 1st this year -- was in large part paved by the tenacity of a social studies teacher-turned-legislator.Read More
California experienced a surge in teen voter pre-registration in the month before the November 2018 election, but only 13% of 16- and 17-year-olds have taken advantage of this opportunity to register to vote before their 18th birthday, according to an analysis by The Civics Center released today. Please read our press release for more information.Read More
2019 is on its way. Are you wondering how your life can change in the coming year? Wondering whether to commit to weight loss or to promoting youth civic engagement? It’s a hard choice. How will you feel as you are putting each resolution into practice? Let’s compare.Read More