01/14/2019: "Temperance & Good Citizenship Day"
Public schools throughout Washington will observe Temperance and Good Citizenship Day Jan. 16. This annual commemoration unique to Washington was created in 1923 to teach the qualities of civic leadership.
Temperance and Good Citizenship Day is one of several civic observances for which state law provides specific instructions for schools.
Each January, Washington students learn about the importance of registering to vote and other key ways to become good citizens, aided by civic education resources provided by the state Office of the Superintendent of Public Education. Additional resources for teachers are available at the Secretary of State’s Temperance and Good Citizenship Day web page.
“It is our responsibility to prepare Washington’s students to engage with their communities when they enter adult life after graduation,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Chris Reykdal said. “Temperance and Good Citizenship Day is a special opportunity to teach these values and discuss how they’re relevant to American life today.”
In 2018, the Legislature made Temperance and Good Citizenship Day the focus of the Future Voter Program proposed by Secretary of State Kim Wyman. Starting later this year, high school social studies, civics, and history teachers will coordinate in-class events in which 16- and 17-year-old Washington citizens can enroll as Future Voters, which will add them automatically to the voter registration database upon turning 18.
“Registering to vote early in life is the first major step to a lifetime of being civically engaged and becoming a lifelong voter,” Secretary Wyman said. “On Temperance and Good Citizenship Day, we share the importance of this action with the next generation of Washington voters. Bringing the ability to join voter rolls to Washington’s classrooms will make launching a lifetime of good citizenship all the more convenient.”
Washington’s Office of Secretary of State oversees a number of areas within state government, including managing state elections, registering corporations and charities, and governing the use of the state flag and state seal. The office also manages the State Archives and the State Library, documents extraordinary stories in Washington’s history through Legacy Washington, oversees the Combined Fund Drive for charitable giving by state employees, and administers the state’s Address Confidentiality Program to help protect survivors of crime.