State Board endorses Students Serve campaign

The Kansas State Board of Education has endorsed a new “Students Serve” initiative to recruit high school students as poll workers. The campaign dovetails with the State Board’s push for increased civic engagement among Kansas students. 

Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab oversees election activities in the state; Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Communications and Policy Katie Koupal is leading the Students Serve effort. KASB, KNEA, USA-Kansas and the Kansas State High School Activities Association are program partners. 

Koupal said county clerks and election officers asked the Secretary for help recruiting student workers. High school students age 16 and above are eligible to work at the polls under the supervision of election staff. Students should commit to either a half-day or full day of work at primary or general elections in 2019, 2020 and in the future.  

Koupal said working at the polls is an opportunity for students to earn community service hours and be directly involved in the democratic process. She emphasized the initiative is not a mandate.  

“This is very exciting,” said Board Chair Kathy Busch. “I’m looking forward to getting these materials out to my districts.” Busch told Koupal the Board encourages civic engagement as an expected outcome for Kansas public school students and offered the assistance of the state department of education in promoting Students Serve.  

Board Member Jim Porter suggested the board formally approve the Students Serve program at a future meeting; Busch agreed.


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