Kids Voting a real civics lesson |

Kids Voting a real civics lesson

Cindy Ramunno
Laine Coffey (far left), a volunteer with Kids Voting, helps Eagle County Charter Academy third graders Tuesday cast their vote for Governor.

At the Eagle County Charter Academy, however, Ellen Smith-Eaton introduced Kids Voting to Eagle County two years ago.

The nonprofit organization gives kids a chance at making a choice at the polls – not a difference in the various races, but certainly a learning experience on the ins and outs of American elections process.

“We need help getting the word out about how important it is for kids to learn how to vote and that their vote counts,” says Chairperson Ellen Smith-Eaton states.

Kids Voting was started by a group of business men in the early 1990s. While on vacation in Costa Rica, the men were speaking with a fishing guide who mentioned that in the Latin American country a 90 percent voter turnout is typical.

The reason? Kids go to polls with parents and than talk about it at home. It’s part of the culture.

So the local businessman came back to the United States and established Kids Voting. They asked teachers to work within their existing curriculum to help educate children about the entire voting process. In most counties, Kids Voting has a booth at the various precincts.

For more information, call Smith-Eaton at 926-7930.

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