By Pixie Sulser
In mock elections at Ramona High School and Olive Peirce Middle School, Governor Mitt Romney won the presidential race over President-elect Barack Obama.
Of the 455 votes cast at RHS, 220 went to Romney and 207 to Obama with the remaining votes spread among the other candidates.
The RHS election sponsored by the school’s National Honor Society (NHS) encouraged students to become informed about the political climate of the country. Many teachers on campus incorporated presidential debates and proposition discussions into their lesson plans, allowing students to investigate both sides of an issue to form their own opinion.
NHS students set up voting polls with booths donated by the San Diego County Registrar’s office at four locations around campus to allow students easy access to voting during their lunch.
“We had hoped to have more students vote,” said NHS President and RHS senior Tristan Stidham, “but we feel
the event was successful in bringing the national election to the attention of more students.”
RHS was one of 674 schools participating in the MyVote California Student Mock Election program spearheaded by California Secretary of State Debra Bowen and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson. According to the Secretary of State’s office, the number of schools participating in the style voting program surpassed numbers from the five previous mock elections.
The results from the Ramona student elections differed slightly from those statewide. The numbers reported from the Secretary of State’s office elected Obama to another term of office with 69.29 percent of the student vote to Romney’s 23.48 percent. Statewide totals elected Dianne Feinstein as U.S. Senator with 65.60 percent of the student vote. Ramona students elected Republican Elizabeth Emken.
Propositions 30, 31, 33, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, and 40 passed in the student elections while Propositions 32 and 34 failed in the state totals. In Ramona the students agreed with others in passing the propositions with the exceptions of Proposition 34, which failed with students across the state but passed with RHS students, and 40, which was successful in the state totals, failed in Ramona.
On the nation’s actual Election Day, Nov. 6, a total of 855 OPMS students and staff members cast their votes for President and Vice President of the United States in their mock election organized by the their National Junior Honor Society (NJHS).
With patriotic music playing and real voting booths, also donated by the Registrar’s Office, the OPMS Performing Arts Center took on a festive air. Each second period teacher escorted their students to the Voting Headquarters where they were guided through the process by NJHS members.
Once ballots were marked and deposited into an official ballot box, students were given an official “I Voted”
sticker to signify their participation.
Ingrid Forbes, NJHS adviser and 8th grade English language arts teacher, explained that the entire process—from the hype of the election to the actual voting—is important because “it helps the students realize that in a few short years they will have the right to vote in a real election. They may remember being part of this democratic process and register as soon as they turn 18.”
“It was great to see the involvement of the entire school,” said Forbes.
She shared that teachers led their students in a variety of activities to prepare for voting day. “They hosted debates, showed educational videos about the Electoral College, and provided students with the platforms of both candidates so the students could make an informed decision at the polls.”
On Election Day, the OPMS Olive Peirce Today (OPT) news team recorded the event and interviewed voters regarding their choices.