Government Students Attend Early Voting


Photo by Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe

Seniors traveled to the Tarrant County Subcourthouse in Mansfield to see the process of voting firsthand. Photo by OSCE.

Jonah Pedroza, Sports Editor

On Nov. 1 and 2, Ms. Stephanie Gresham took six government classes on a field trip to the Tarrant County Subcourthouse to give students an opportunity to see how the voting process works. Ms. Gresham began taking students on this field trip 3-4 years ago, and students have responded positively each year.

It takes the fear out of voting, because it’s intimidating the first time you [vote],” Ms. Gresham said. “If we can make [voting] less mysterious and scary for [students], then maybe they’ll be encouraged to do it when they’re actually eligible.”

The field trip only lasts during the government class period. While there, Constable Sandra Lee takes students on a tour of the courthouse.

“At first, [students were] kind of like ‘why are we going over there if I can’t vote’, but the courthouse is more than just voting,” Ms. Gresham said. “It’s where you pay your car registration, it’s where the courts are, and it’s nice for [students] to see the people that do all of this.”

Senior Amber Gantt did not vote in the midterm elections, but values the importance of voting.

“[The trip] was more interesting than I thought, I didn’t really know anything about [voting] before,” Gantt said. “At our age, voting can seem confusing but it’s a really simple process and it directly affects your life.”

In Tarrant County, 15 positions were up for election including three criminal court judge positions, three Justice of the Peace positions and two district judge positions. Eligible students were able to vote for the local and state elections on the trip.

“18 to 25 year olds are the most underrepresented group in our country right now, and they have the biggest power for change,” Gresham said. “Students have a voice and until 18 to 25 year olds start going and voting, they’re going to have to live with the choices that other people make.”