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RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam today issued a proclamation to officially recognize April 21–27, 2019, as Virginia High School Student Voter Registration Week. During this week, high school students, teachers, and administrators across the Commonwealth will be encouraged to conduct voter registration drives at their schools.
“By encouraging young Virginians to be informed and engaged we can foster lifelong voters and ensure that our democracy is truly representative of our diverse Commonwealth,” said Governor Northam. “My administration is proud to support this initiative that stresses the importance of civic engagement and makes voter registration a priority for high school students.”
Last September, Governor Northam announced the Governor’s High School Voter Registration Challenge for the 2018–2019 academic year. Any school that registers 65 percent or more of their senior class to vote can apply here before the May 20 deadline to receive a banner from the Governor commending their commitment to voter registration. Schools can sign up to participate for the challenge here.
“We are excited about commemorating the fourth annual High School Voter Student Registration Week, and we hope to encourage Virginia’s students to become informed and involved in the voting process,” said Secretary of Administration Dr. Keyanna Conner. “The Governor’s Challenge is a tremendous opportunity to educate young Virginians about the importance of exercising their constitutional right to vote.”
Eligible Virginians who will be 18-years-old by the next general election are encouraged to register and vote in the upcoming primary elections and all subsequent elections. Students can register through their school’s online link found here. Virginians can also register online through the Department of Elections’ Citizen Portal, the Department of Motor Vehicles, their local General Registrar’s Office, or a voter registration drive. The deadline to register to vote for the statewide primary elections for legislative offices is Monday, May 20, 2019.
“Voter Registration Week is a great way to show young students in the Commonwealth we are all in this together and their voices matter,” said Rebecca Arrington, Regional Coordinator for Inspire U.S. in Virginia. “Our high school leaders are energized by helping their peers register to vote, engaging them in their community, and mobilizing young voters on Election Day.”
Inspire U.S. and the League of Women Voters of Virginia will continue to provide direct support to schools during High School Student Voter Registration Week and throughout the Governor’s Challenge. Schools participating in the registration challenge can get help and support from the League of Women Voters of Virginia and Inspire U.S. Both groups are advocates for expanding the opportunity to vote.
“The League of Women Voters’ historical commitment to all communities is to register to vote,” said Maggi Luca, Voter Service Chair for the League of Women Voters of Virginia. “We realized we needed to develop a strong and creative high school registration program working with all our high schools, election offices, and the Commonwealth. It is inspiring to see this program flourish as the largest potential voting block is young voters. We look forward to their making their voices heard.”
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