Toolkit for Voters Released by U.S. Department of Education

The U.S. Department of Education (Department) unveiled a new “Toolkit for Enhancing Student Voter Engagement” today. This toolkit aims to equip educational institutions with the necessary resources to support eligible students in voter registration and participation. Schools, colleges, and universities are recognized for their pivotal role in fostering civic engagement, and the toolkit provides them with actionable strategies to empower their students.

“Voting is a cornerstone of our democracy, and educational institutions play a crucial part in encouraging student involvement in our democratic processes,” remarked U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “From instilling civic education at an early age to facilitating voting procedures during postsecondary education, our education system guides students in participating in the electoral system. Today’s release of resources is a significant stride towards eliminating barriers that hinder student participation, particularly for underserved students.”

Contained within the toolkit are insights on legal obligations for schools, suggestions for non-partisan initiatives to boost voter engagement among students, federal resources that can be leveraged to aid voters in communities, and exemplars of effective strategies implemented in schools nationwide.

In March 2021, President Biden signed an executive order titled “Promoting Access to Voting,” directing federal agencies to explore ways to enhance voter registration and participation for all Americans.

Subsequently, the Department has implemented various measures to broaden voting accessibility for students, such as incorporating a link to vote.gov on the Federal Student Aid website for easier access to voting information for college students; issuing a Dear Colleague Letter to reinforce voter participation requirements for institutions participating in federal student aid programs; and clarifying the permissibility of utilizing Federal Work Study funds for nonpartisan civic engagement initiatives.

The toolkit is readily accessible here.

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