Secretary of State
Over 37,000 Students Participate in Kentucky Student Mock Election
(Frankfort, KY) Students across the Commonwealth have made their choice on who to send to Washington. Over 37,000 students in elementary, middle, and high schools across the Commonwealth went to the polls over the last two months to vote for their favorite candidate for United States Senator. Students selected Rand Paul for Kentucky’s next U.S. Senator. Nearly 100 Kentucky schools participated in the Kentucky Student Mock Election, a partner election of the National/Student Parent Mock Election, coordinated by Secretary of State Trey Grayson.
“It is essential that students become acclimated to the democratic process, and there is no better way than for them to participate in the process themselves,” stated Secretary Grayson. “We hope that this will begin a lifelong commitment to voting among these young people.”
This project is an exceptional tool for confronting, and in many cases, reversing the disturbing voting trends in the 18-24 year old demographic. Engaging students with the core principles of democracy fosters an important behavior that many will carry far beyond the classroom.
The following are the statewide results of the mock election:
United States Senator
Rand Paul (R) – 52.2%
Jack Conway (D) – 47.8%
Over the last seven years in which the Kentucky Student Mock Election has been conducted by the Office of the Secretary of State, students voted for the actual winning candidate over 83% of the time.
For results from individuals schools, please visit: www.sos.ky.gov/mockelection.
The results of this mock election will represent Kentucky’s votes in the National Student/Parent Mock Election. The National Student/Parent Mock Election seeks to turn the sense of powerlessness that keeps young Americans and their parents from going to the polls into a sense of the power of participation in our democracy.
The National Student/Parent Mock Election receives support from numerous companies and organizations, including Google, the education services and technology company Pearson, USA Today, online animated educational resource provider BrainPOP, the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation, voter registration advocacy group Declare Yourself, the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), the National Association of Student Councils (NASC), the national PTA, and business intelligence firm Barquin International. The Kaplan Foundation also provides ongoing funding for the Mock Election.
The mock election totals include results from mock elections held at high schools across Kentucky where students had the opportunity to vote on voting equipment actually used within their county. This was made possible by grant funding from the Election Assistance Commission and allowed the office to expand its aggressive mock election programs. The office partnered with the Kentucky Department of Education and the NewCities Institute in the grant application process. The hope is that by demystifying the voting process, students will be more encouraged to vote when they become eligible. Kentucky has hosted a mock election for every general election since Secretary Grayson assumed office in 2004.
Grayson directs the Civic Literacy Initiative of Kentucky (CLIK), a multi-year effort that will determine a strategy for enhancing long-term civic engagement and civic literacy within the Commonwealth. As part of that effort, he released a report, Rediscovering Democracy: An Agenda for Action, that calls upon the state to take tangible steps to increase civic literacy. The report, which details four principle recommendations and scores of additional recommendations, was developed from the work of the Kentucky Workgroup on Civic Literacy and the CLIK.
A focus of the report is increased technology in order to further engage students in the political process. Grayson’s office has an international, award-winning website with increased online election services so that information is readily available for Kentucky citizens 24 hours-a-day/7 days-a-week. Grayson is also a pioneer in using popular mediums such as Facebook to make the political system more approachable to young people.
“By involving students in the democratic process, we wish to not only energize young people to vote, but to also remind their family and friends about the importance of voting on November 2, 2010,” said Secretary Grayson.
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