Waynesboro High School encouraging eligible students to register to vote

Waynesboro High School posts voter registration QR codes throughout the school.
Waynesboro High School posts voter registration QR codes throughout the school.(WHSV)
Published: Sep. 30, 2021 at 5:09 PM EDT
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WAYNESBORO, Va. (WHSV) - Virginia is challenging high schools around the state to help get more students who can vote registered to do so.

A teacher at Waynesboro High School is working to meet that challenge and have the voices of his students heard.

“This age group, 18-25, is the lowest represented in elections,” social studies teacher Jason McHenry said.

Part of the reason why, he says, is apathy.

“A lot of the students were ‘why vote? People don’t care anyways. It’s not going to count. It’s not going to matter,”’ McHenry said.

But he wanted to show his students their voices do matter.

“We talked about it and we continued to discuss, but I encouraged them, look, I’m not giving you any other work today. Today’s focus is become a voter, become and informed voter,” McHenry said.

Students had time in class to register to vote, and there are QR codes posted throughout the school so students can register that way as well.

Last year, 166 18-year-olds in Waynesboro registered to vote, with about 60 percent of them making it to the polls.

Teaching students that their vote allows them to have a say in what happens to them is the message McHenry emphasizes.

And while he hopes more students register, he says more needs to be done.

“I do think there should be more driven initiatives, more value put into why they need to vote because their voice needs to be heard,” McHenry said.

The deadline to vote in the November 2 election is October 12.

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