Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Students have their say in election race

7 September 2005

Students have their say in election race

They are not legally allowed to vote, but that will not stop thousands of Auckland children and teenagers from casting a ballot in election week.

A record 6,000 students from 30 schools are taking part in Auckland City’s ‘Kids Voting’ programme, which aims to teach students about the democratic process.

The programme is part of the Civic Awareness in Schools initiative and features a mock MMP election in which students vote for real political parties and the actual candidates standing in their school’s electorate.

Auckland City’s electoral officer, Dale Ofsoske, says the ‘Kids Voting’ project is a fun way to involve younger people in the electoral process.

“This programme gives young people a chance to explore political ideas and processes and to really feel like they have a say.

“It’s also a great chance for students to talk to their parents about the democratic system and to engage in some interesting dinner table conversation,” Mr Ofsoske says.

From today, as part of the ‘Kids Voting’ programme, all schools will be provided with:

- voting documents, which have been approved by the Chief Electoral Officer
- ballot bags
- instructions on how to create their school electoral roll
- instructions on how to count their votes
- a curriculum guideline.

Mr Ofsoske says teachers encourage students to research party policies and candidates in their electorates so that they can make an informed vote.

“Many young people do not understand the electoral process when they turn 18, so they are not interested in voting.

“I hope that by participating in mock elections at school they’ll be more interested in voting when they reach the legal voting age,” Mr Ofsoske says.

He says students must complete their voting by 14 September (three days prior to Election Day) and must not open their sealed ballot bag until Monday 19 September.

Mr Ofsoske says schools can then compare their results with the real results.

At the last general election, the nine schools that took part in the ‘Kids Voting’ programme voted: National 24 per cent, Labour 23 per cent, Greens 15 per cent, ACT 11 per cent, NZ First 5 per cent, United Future 4 per cent and the Alliance 2 per cent.

Mr Ofsoske says those results did not reflect the actual election results.

The 2002 election saw Labour poll 41 per cent, National 21 per cent, New Zealand First 10 per cent, ACT 7 per cent, Greens 7 per cent and United Future 7 per cent.

“It’s interesting that the students’ votes do not necessarily reflect their parents voting patterns. I think young people are developing their own political opinions earlier,” Mr Ofsoske says.

The students’ votes will be kept under lock and key until Monday 19 September following the general election on 17 September.

The votes will then be counted and schools should have their results within the week.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news