Idaho students will continue going to school on election day. Legislation to declare a school holiday on every election day in Idaho was killed in the House Education Committee on Monday after it drew strong opposition from school boards and school districts across the state. The measure was designed to allow schools to serve as polling places without creating any danger to kids from all the strangers coming to campus. Chief Deputy Ada County Clerk Phil McGrane said the bill envisioned moving teacher professional development days to election days, so teachers still could be on campus, but not students.
“The desire of the bill is to remove the students from the schools to allow voting to occur in the schools to maintain the students’ safety,” he said.
It would have applied to four dates each year: The fall and spring general election dates, plus, when a particular school district is holding a bond or levy election in March or August.
“I am well aware that you guys know education much better than I do, but I want to share a little bit about the challenges of administering elections,” McGrane told the committee. “Having adequate facilities is one of the major challenges that we run into.”