Some Shelby County schools to close on Election Day

Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 6:58 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Some school districts across Tennessee will close for Election Day, including right here in Shelby County.

In compliance with state law, Memphis-Shelby County School (MSCS) officials say students may not be learning in the classroom on Tuesday, but definitely will at the polls.

“We have been working over the last several months and weeks to inform those students about voter registration opportunities and the importance of voting,” said Erin Luster the community engagement manager for MSCS.

It’s not just a free day off.

The 2021 state law says schools used as polling locations can close for instruction.

MCSC officials say they hope students of voting age will take advantage of the day off.

“We are hopeful that our students who are able to be registered voters are able to mobilize tomorrow,” Luster said. “Go to their polling locations, particularly if they didn’t take advantage of early voting. We are hopeful that those students and their families can go together to cast their ballots and participate in the democratic process.”

Kyndall Lewis of MSCS said the district has more than 2,000 students who are eligible to vote.

“We were able to reach over 150 students and families,” Lewis said. “We did have some opportunities to connect with family members and older adults who were also able to register so they can exercise their right to vote tomorrow.”

In partnership with the “I am a voter campaign”, Luster says students of voting age and younger have a great opportunity to learn the significance of Election Day.

“We are hopeful that those students can see the adults in their lives participate in that, and it can be a family engagement and a family learning opportunity for the students of all ages,” Luster said.

According to the 2021 state law, LEA or public charter schools may choose to be open or closed for instruction on election days other than days on which a regular November election occurs.

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