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Stop Using Schools as Polling Locations

This petition had 112 supporters

There are strict procedures and rules in place to approve campus visitors and keep our elementary schools safe during the school day.  All visitors must be buzzed in at the locked front doors and pass into the office to receive approval and a badge before accessing the locked school hallways.  However, on election days these rules go out the window at some campuses like Heights Elementary where the doors are open wide and voters stream into the main hallway to access the gym for voting.  The steady stream of strangers is literally 5 feet away from the cafeteria which is often filled with students. The voters walk through the same major hallway of the school the students use to travel from classroom to classroom.

The principal and many other staff members spend their entire day monitoring the election area in order to prevent voters from accessing other areas of the school or the cafeteria.  Having the election at our campus not only poses a safety risk for our students, but it takes the staff away from their most important job of guiding the learning environment.

I don't think Heights Elementary should be used as a polling location any longer. Heights is not built in a way that allows for voters to enter through an outside door and remain separated from the main school area.  Also, the district should look carefully at the campuses which do have outer doors that allow voters to remain separated from school hallways to make sure proper safety protocol is in place.  It's possible that we need to seek new ways of conducting polling that don't involve schools at all.  A location full of hundreds of vulnerable students doesn't seem like the best place to also host elections which can be emotionally charged and involve people of all backgrounds, some of which could be unstable.

Please join me in saying the safety of students in an uninterrupted learning environment is the top priority at Heights Elementary, and voting needs to be moved elsewhere.




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Becky Campbell needs your help with “RISD School Board and Administration: Stop Using Schools as Polling Locations”. Join Becky and 111 supporters today.