• Related County Agencies

    Student Poll Worker Program

Student Precinct Officer Program

November 2020 Poll Worker Information

Due to changes necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, needs for poll workers have changed for the November 3, 2020 Presidential Election. There will be in-person voting available from 9am to 5pm on Saturday, Sunday and Monday before Election Day, as well as from 7am to 8pm on Election Day. Any voter will be able to go to any in-person voting location in the County.

Poll workers will be needed:

  • 8am to 7pm, Saturday, October 31st
  • 8am to 7pm, Sunday, November 1st
  • 8am to 7pm, Monday, November 2nd
  • 6am to approximately 10pm, Tuesday, November 3rd

Poll workers will be assigned to 1 of approximately 30 locations around the County.

Bilingual poll workers who are fluent in English and also speak Spanish, Tagalog, Vietnamese or Khmer are highly desired.

Poll workers will be required to use computers to look up voters, and issue and print ballots, and should be comfortable with technology.

Poll Workers will receive a stipend for each day worked – please see below for more details.

Assignments will include:

  • Inspectors
  • Clerks
  • Greeters / Line Management
  • Cleaners

Safety Protocols

The safety and health of our poll workers are of paramount importance. We are planning on a number of safety protocols to keep both poll workers and voters safe.

These protocols include:

  • Supplying Personal Protective Equipment, including
    • Masks
    • Facial Shields
    • Gloves
    • Hand Sanitizer
    • Plexiglass barriers
  • Specific site layout plans for each voting location to promote social distancing
  • Signage for voters related to health checks, mask wearing and social distancing
  • Curbside voting options for voters
  • Changed processing protocols to minimize contact with voters
  • Cleaning protocols including sanitizing
    • High touch surfaces such as doors and tables
    • Voting booths and equipment
    • Pens and other implements
  • Training on COVID safety
  • All poll workers are required to wear masks, and may use face shields if desired

Training

Training is currently being developed to prioritize safety. It may include all or some of the following:

  • Virtual training via recorded videos
  • Virtual training via interactive meetings (Zoom or similar)
  • In-Person training for equipment and software, with social distancing and safety protocols 

Overview

The Sonoma County Registrar of Voters office operates a successful Student Precinct Officer Program. California State law allows eligible students to be appointed to serve as poll workers in a polling place on Election Day.

High school teachers and counselors are encouraged to talk with their students about this unique "behind-the-scenes" view of elections, and nominate qualified students for this program.

Students gain invaluable experience as Election Officials. They receive "hands-on" experience and training in elections administration, and gain an appreciation for the importance of public service and the significance of the democratic process.

Important Students will receive a stipend of $135 for participating in the program. Schools may wish to consider this a fundraising opportunity as well!

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Who Can Qualify

To be eligible, students must meet the following criteria:

  • Be at least 16 years old on, or before, the Election Day of service
  • Be a United States citizen or a lawfully admitted permanent resident on, or before, the Election Day of service
  • Be a student in good standing, attending a public or private secondary educational institution
  • Possess a GPA of at least 2.5 (on a 4.0 scale)

Important Note: Students are not required to be registered to vote in order to be part of this program.

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Student Precinct Officer Commitment

Students who participate in the program must complete the following assignments:

  • Attend a 2-hour training class prior to Election Day
  • Become a member of the "Precinct Board" (with other poll workers) and participate in the operation of the polling place
  • Perform duties assigned by the Inspector (the "lead" poll worker). This includes, but is not limited to, the following: locate voter names on rosters; obtain voter signatures; provide simple instruction to voters; issue, receive, and deposit ballot card(s); help set up and clean up the polling place.

Important Note: Election Day hours are long: 6:00 AM to 10:00 PM. "Split shifts" may be arranged. Please contact the Registrar of Voters office for details.

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Teacher Nominations

If you are a teacher and want to nominate eligible students, complete the following steps:

  • Print the Student Precinct Officer Program Nomination/Application Form (PDF: 26 kB)
  • Complete one application form for each student being nominated
  • Mail completed forms to the Registrar of Voters office or FAX  to (707) 565-6861 noting "Attention: Student Precinct Officer Program"
  • After Election Day, follow up with your students and have a discussion about their experience

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Additional Information

To obtain more information about the Student Precinct Officer Program, contact the Registrar of Voters office or request information by email to rov-polls@sonoma-county.org.

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Contact Information

Deva Marie Proto

County Clerk-Recorder-Assessor-Registrar of Voters

Business Hours
Monday – Friday
8:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Addresses

Registrar of Voters

435 Fiscal Drive

Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.4657357, -122.7251823
Mailing Address
PO Box 11485
Santa Rosa, CA 95406-1485
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