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YLI 2013 National Mock Constitutional Convention and Election

The Youth Leadership Initiative (YLI) at the University of Virginia Center for Politics will hold the National Constitutional Convention and Mock Election from October 21st-31st, 2013. The National Constitutional Convention will provide the opportunity for all participating YLI classrooms to practice their civic skills by asking them to weigh in on possible Constitutional reforms. Students in Virginia and New Jersey will also have the opportunity to vote in gubernatorial races taking place this fall.

YLI opted to offer a National Mock Constitutional Convention as a way to get its educators involved in discussing the founding document beyond Constitution Day on September 17th. Teachers encouraged to begin discussing Constitutional reform on September 17th and continue the conversation through voting in October. There are Constitutional reform lesson plans on the YLI website that support the National Mock Constitutional Convention.

Professor Larry Sabato, Director of the Center for Politics, is the author of a book on Constitutional reform entitled, A More Perfect Constitution. This book inspired the Youth Leadership Initiative to create lesson plans on longer house terms, campaign finance and led to the creation of the first National Mock Constitutional Convention held in 2007. YLI believes in active citizenship and that exercises such as the National Mock Constitutional Convention will enable students to think critically about the challenges that face our republic.

In addition to the Mock Constitutional Convention, YLI is offering its annual Mock Election for New Jersey and Virginia. As in previous years, YLI will feature Comparing the Candidates lesson plans allowing students to make informed decisions when casting their vote for Governor. Both the National Mock Constitutional Convention and Mock Election will provide educators the opportunity to customize their ballots to add local races and referenda as well as school-wide initiatives.

As with all YLI programs and resources, the National Mock Constitutional Convention and Mock Election are available FREE of charge to all registered YLI teacher. Teacher who have not yet joined YLI should SIGN UP TODAY. For more information on the National Mock Constitutional Convention and Election please contact YLI at ylihelp@virginia.edu or 1.866.514.8389.