Students Head to the Polls Beginning October 25 to Vote in My Voice™ National Student Mock Election

23 October 2012

Teachers, Parents and Students: Register at www.nationalmockelection.org to cast ballots

Washington, DC – With the election only two weeks away, voters are preparing to head to the polls, and so are students. Starting October 25, young people from kindergarten through college will take part in the My VoiceTM National Student Mock Election, voting in schools, community centers, libraries and homes in the country’s largest civic education project.

This free digital initiative from the Pearson Foundation builds on the 30-year history of the National Student/Parent Mock Election and My Voice, the leading program in student voice. Over the past three decades, more than 50 million young voters have cast their ballots in classrooms across the United States, while at the same time learning about the importance of raising their own voice on important national issues. This year voting begins on October 25 and culminates on the National Mock Election day, November 1, in advance of the nation’s election.

For the first time, voting in the 2012 National Student Mock Election will be an entirely digital experience. In conjunction with this year’s effort, the Pearson Foundation also introduced the My Election Poll, which allows students to voice their opinions about national, social and community issues. The polls, which began earlier this summer, are ongoing and posted twice a week. Some of the results include:

In addition to voting, educators and students who make use of the My Election Poll have access to a wide array of resources including lesson plans, educational games, sample ballots, videos, polling and more.

“The Mock Election gives students the opportunity to learn about the electoral process and how important their vote is,” said National Student/Parent Mock Election President Gloria Kirshner. “These students are our future voters and research tells us we need to provide the tools and resources for them to understand ‘government of the people, by the people, and for the people.’”

“The Pearson Foundation is proud to be a part of the My Voice National Student Mock Election because listening to students is important,” said Pearson Foundation President and CEO Mark Nieker. “Young people everywhere are talking about their opinions every day. They’re natural leaders and we all can learn a great deal by trusting what they have to say.”

The National Student Mock Election was co-founded by Edward Stanley and Gloria Kirshner, as the National Student/Parent Mock Election. After three decades, and 18 elections, it still stands as the world’s largest national mock election. More than 60 national civic, educational, and business organizations serve as cooperating organizations and partners.

While the National Student Mock Election is a nationwide effort, states, local communities and schools customize their involvement. Students in Michigan will hold their own student election rally where they will meet candidates, hear them speak, and appear on Michigan Government Television. In Oregon, The League of Women Voters of Oregon is hosting a group of Japanese teachers who have developed their own mock election program in Japan and want to experience this country’s National Student Mock Election and general election firsthand. And in Forsyth County (GA), schools are piloting an Election Learning Adventure in their new NOBLE (New Opportunities for Better Learning Environments) Virtual World, an interactive 3-D immersive environment in which students become avatars. Grassroots student programs are appearing all across the country, with examples at www.nationalmockelection.org.

For more information and to register to vote, go to www.nationalmockelection.org. Follow us on Twitter @MyMockElection, #MyElection, like us on Facebook.com/NationalMockElection and share videos at www.schooltube.com/channel/nationalmockelection. The final results for the National Student Mock Election will be posted at www.nationalmockelection.org.

About the My Voice™ National Student Mock Election

This year, the Pearson Foundation is combining two great initiatives to involve U.S. students before, during, and after fall’s national election with a new program, the My Voice™ National Student Mock Election. The My Voice National Student Mock Election builds on the rich history of the National Student/Parent Mock Election, the country’s largest civic engagement project, which reached more than 5 million students in 2008, and on My Voice, the leading name in student voice. This single project will engage students, parents, and educators all year long.

About the Pearson Foundation

The Pearson Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, extends Pearson’s commitment to education by partnering with leading nonprofit, civic, and business organizations to provide financial, organizational, and publishing assistance across the globe. The foundation aims to make a difference by sponsoring innovative educational programs and extending its educational expertise to help in classrooms and in local communities. More information on the Pearson Foundation can be found at www.pearsonfoundation.org.

Media Contact:

Stacey Finkel, Stacey.finkel@pearsonfoundation.org, 703.304.1377