AUSTIN — Texas Secretary of State John Scott today encouraged interested Texans to get involved with the election process at the local level by learning how to become a poll worker for the upcoming November 8 General Election. The Texas Secretary of State’s Online Poll Worker Training program offers Texas voters the opportunity to serve as an Election Judge or Clerk in their county of registration. Additionally, Texas students who are at least 16 years of age can volunteer to serve as Student Election Clerks.
To serve as an Election Clerk, a person must be a U.S. citizen, a qualified voter within the county, and must be appointed by the Presiding Judge in an election precinct. Interested Texas voters should contact the chairs of their county’s political parties or their county election office to volunteer to serve at the polls.
The courses for the Online Poll Worker Training program are divided into modules consisting of 3-6 lessons each, as well as 10 case studies where the material and lessons are applied to real-world scenarios. During the course, users can start, stop and return to the point where they left off, and skip from lesson to lesson until fully completed. At the end of each course, users must answer exam questions to verify they understand the material. Upon completing the course, prospective poll workers will be able to print a certificate indicating that they have completed the Secretary of State’s training.
“Beyond exercising your civic duty by casting a ballot in the upcoming General Election, you can also get involved in the election process by signing up to become a poll worker in your county,” Secretary Scott said.
“This is a great opportunity to witness the election process firsthand, learn about the safeguards that protect the integrity of the ballot box, and spread the word to your friends and family about how they can help administer fair and transparent elections. If you’re a high school student who is at least 16 years old, you can also sign up to be a Student Clerk at Early Voting and Election Day polling places.”
“Help your local election office and your fellow Texas voters by signing up to become a poll worker today!”
How to become an Election Worker
Under Texas law, you are eligible to be appointed as an election worker if you are:
- A U.S. Citizen
- A qualified voter in the jurisdiction in which the election is being conducted (County or municipality)
To get the process started, you can take Texas’ Online Poll Worker Training program. This web-based curriculum mirrors the Handbook for Election Judges and Clerks (PDF) and will train poll workers about polling place procedures. In addition to the information found in the handbook, there are test questions, real life case studies and exercises to resolve and other features such as voting equipment videos or instructions specific to your county. The online training is available free of charge, 24/7, for all poll workers. You can take the training anytime and anywhere you have internet access.
With the online course, you can use your computer or mobile device, skip around from lesson to lesson, start, stop and come back to where you left off, and utilize the progress bar showing your advancement through the course.
Registering into the Online Poll Worker Training Program:
Prospective poll workers must self-register into the system by signing up for the course. To sign-up, you must select and enter a:
County Location or “City-School-Other Political Subdivisions”
First and Last Name
Once registered, you will have immediate access to the training.
If you do not have an e-mail address, you can create one using one of the free providers.
Should you have any questions about the Online Poll Worker Training, please send an e-mail to PollWorkerTraining@sos.texas.gov or call toll free at 1-800-252-VOTE (8683).
Become a Student Clerk
High school students who are 16 years of age or older now have the opportunity to participate in the electoral process by serving as election clerks at the polling place during Early Voting or on Election Day. A student who is at least 16 years of age and who is enrolled in a public or private high school or home school and has the consent of the principal (or parent/legal guardian in charge of education in home school) may serve as an election clerk. The election officials must receive written authorization from the student’s parent or guardian for the student to serve in the election for which he or she is appointed.
This program is designed to provide students with a greater awareness of the electoral process and the rights and responsibilities of voters. The students will assist their local election officials by filling positions at polling places during the Early Voting period or on Election Day and working under the direction of the presiding judge at the polling place.
How to Apply
Fill out the Student Election Clerk Application and Permission Slip (PDF).
Have your parent or guardian sign the Parent/Legal Guardian Permission portion.
Have your school principal sign the School Principal Permission portion. Also, take the proper steps to ensure that your absence from school in order to work during Early Voting or on Election Day will be excused.
Send the application to the local elections officials conducting the election in which you wish to serve (county clerk/elections administrator, city secretary, school superintendent, etc.).
If selected, attend the required election training class prior to serving as a clerk. This training provides all the necessary information and knowledge to be a successful elections clerk.
Work at the polls as assigned during Early Voting or on Election Day.
A school district may excuse a student for the purpose of serving as an Early Voting and/or Election Day clerk for a maximum of two days in a school year.
Example: A student could work two weekdays during Early Voting for an election held on Tuesday, November 8, 2022, and then also work on Election Day, as the student would only have to be excused from school for two days.
Up to four student election clerks may work at a single Early Voting site at a time, and up to two student clerks may work at an Election Day polling place at a time.
Early Voting for the upcoming General Election begins Monday, October 24 and ends Friday, November 4.
Remember: when you turn 18 you will have reached the age to serve as a regular Election Clerk or Judge!
For more information on how to get involved in Texas elections, visit www.votetexas.gov/get-involved