Election page

Emily Seale is sworn in as an election day page by Etlan poll worker Jane Clatterbuck.

Those voting in the county likely saw a few younger faces working the polls this year.

As part of an election page program, nine Madison County High School students worked the polls Tuesday. Each spent five hours at their assigned precinct. The program was established by the Virginia General Assembly in 2000 to encourage student interest in voting and provide students with opportunities to help senior citizens and people with disabilities.

This is the first time the program has been offered in Madison County. Director of elections and general registrar Lauren Eanes and the Madison County Electoral Board encouraged students to apply for the program. Those chosen were then assigned a shift at a particular precinct. Six students—Grace McCain, Audrey Cruey, Emily Seale, Chase Ryder, Sophia Adams and Meleek Butler worked 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. while Willow Mayer, Jonah Clatterbuck and Morgan Clark worked 2:45-7 p.m.

Page duties ranged from greeting and directing voters to providing sample ballots and distributing “I Voted” stickers. The students also had to follow set rules and were required to attend training, take directions from the chief officer of election at each precinct, remain impartial and dress appropriately.

In exchange for their service, the pages received five hours of community service credit and a certification of appreciation.

Senior Emily Seale who served at the Etlan precinct said it was the community service aspect that drew her to the program.

“I’m in the BETA Club and we’re required to complete 10 hours of community service,” she said.

Seale spent the morning giving voters instructions on how to complete their ballots.

For more information about the election page program, contact Eanes at 948-6533 or govote113@verizon.net.

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