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Voting at your local school: a learning experience?

Voters wait in line at PS 175 in Harlem this morning (via Flickr)

Voters wait in line at PS 175 in Harlem this morning (via Flickr)

Election Day marks the only time all year that many New Yorkers ever set foot inside their local public school.

What did you notice about the school you visited today? Did you learn anything new about your neighborhood school?

At This Week in Education, Alexander Russo writes that he thinks the practice of locating polls inside schools “legitimizes schools.” And at TAPPED, the blog of the American Prospect magazine, Dana Goldstein writes that it could also help break down stereotypes about urban schools:

One of the best things about voting is getting to spend some time inside a local public school. This is especially important in mixed-income, multi-racial neighborhoods like mine, where many affluent white parents have negative stereotypes about the level of disorder inside public schools. … I voted at Bell Multicultural High School in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of D.C. School was in session, and the students were just amazing.

But something Goldstein points out about the school in another post about her voting experience could be a turnoff to some parents: Anyone entering, including voters, must go through a metal detector.