By Taylor Brown
INDIANAPOLIS — Normally teachers spend time trying to break students’ habits, but Indiana teachers are trying to create a new one with the help of the Indiana Kids’ Election program.
Indiana Kids’ Election is designed to get students in grades K-12 in the habit of voting at a young age to increase Indiana’s voter turnout in the long run.
Students at North Grove Elementary School in Greenwood, vote in school-wide mock election. Kids were required to sign in using either their school-issued lunch ID card or a handmade one. Photo provided by Indiana Kids’ Election.
“I want to vote because I want to have my voice heard,” said 11-year-old Le’Asia Hunt while discussing the mock election that was held at Francis W. Parker Montessori School 56 and across the state.
At School 56, pre-K through third-grade students voted for their favorite candy, while students in fourth grade and up voted in the races for president, governor and Senate.
The thousands of students that participated in the Indiana Kids’ Election selected Hillary Clinton as the president. With nearly 53,000 votes cast, Clinton received 46.5 percent of the student votes, and Trump trailed behind with 42.4 percent of the votes, according to the results posted by Tuesday morning.
“Usually it’s men that win president elections and I think that women should have a chance to win president,” sixth grader Le’Asia said.
Students across the state also selected Todd Young for Senate and John Gregg for governor.
According to Indiana state law, schools must give lessons on the election process two weeks before the general election. Indiana Kids’ Election provides free curriculum to the participating schools that help them met the Indiana requirements. The program has schools participating in all of Indiana’s 92 counties.
After she turns 18, Le’Asia said she plans to vote in every election.
“I don’t want the wrong person to go into office,” Le’Asia said.
Taylor Brown is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.