American Legion Boys & Girls State is among the most respected and selective educational programs of government instruction for U.S. high-school students. A participatory program in which students become part of the operation of local, county and state government, Boys State was founded in 1935 to counter the socialism-inspired Young Pioneer Camps. The program was the idea of two Illinois Legionnaires, Hayes Kennedy and Harold Card, who organized the first Boys State at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield. Starting in 2023 Girls can now participate in Boys State, and hence the name change from Boys State to "Boys & Girls State in California.
At Boys & Girls State, participants learn the rights, privileges and responsibilities of franchised citizens. The training is objective and centers on the structure of city, county and state governments. Operated by students elected to various offices, Boys & Girls State activities include legislative sessions, court proceedings, law-enforcement presentations, assemblies, bands, choruses and recreational programs.
Typically, high schools will submit a recommended lists of eligible candidates to local American Legion posts. Those individuals who have successfully completed their junior year of high school and who have at least one more semester remaining are considered. We are looking for individuals who illustrate leadership, character, scholarship, loyalty and service in their schools and community. Merit and ability are the basis for evaluation during the actual citizens selection process. The local posts will conduct interviews from the list and select their representative(s) for the program. In most cases, individual expenses are paid by a sponsoring post, a local business, community-based organizations/charities and individual contributions.
Boys & Girls State programs currently exist in all Legion departments except Hawaii. As separate corporations, Boys & Girls State programs vary in content and method of procedure, but each adheres to the same basic concept: teaching government from the city to the state level.
American Legion California Boys & Girls State competitions are in compliance with federal handicap laws. Most programs require a medical/parental consent certificate signed by a parent and registered doctor.
Cecil Cox Post 147 sponsors 1 student from each of the five High Schools in the Clovis United School District. Interviews of interested candidates are held at each High School by a team from our Post and primary and alternate candidates are selected. The interview process normally occurs in the February and March time period. Boys & Girls State is held in mid June and is currently scheduled to be conducted at Sacramento State University. Home schooled and private High School candidates are eligible to compete as well. To participate contact your High School counselor or our Post at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You may send an email to:
Please include school name and city where the school is located in your email.
Or Visit Us at: https://boysstatecalifornia.org/the-program/about-us/