Monday, November 23, 2020

Ahead of provincial election, Saskatchewan students head to the polls


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Alice and her classmate Isabel, who are both in the school’s gifted education program, said they both appreciated that when submitting their ballots on Thursday.

“You should do research on what the parties are saying, what they believe and how they present their information —  and what that information is,” Isabel said.

Non-profit CIVIX organizes the vote and tabulates the results, which will be released Monday night. It also provides a survey for students that shows where they sit on the political spectrum and which parties align with their beliefs.

The COVID considerations at play in this year’s provincial election carry over into the student vote. While some schools opted for traditional paper ballots, Evan Hardy was among those that used an online form instead.

Schoenfeld said there was a lot of excitement and engagement in his class, including healthy debate and interest from his students about differing opinions.

“A lot of kids see the political ads … and have opinions about them and they want to be involved, but kind of feel shut out of the political process,” Schoenfeld said. “So even though they know this vote doesn’t count for the actual election, I think that it allows them to feel like they’ve kind of made a difference and that their voice is heard.”

Alice said her main concerns when determining who to vote for stemmed from the overarching issues of the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change. Isabel’s focus was on how increasing the minimum wage could affect the standard of living in the province.

“One thing that I would say is, vote for the greater good, don’t just think about what’s going to affect you personally, because there are so many other people in the city or the country or the state,” Alice said. “They’ll be affected for it too.”

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