More than 100 high school students from the Chandler Unified School District participated in the Chandler Political Youth Forum Tuesday night, the most participants in all the other forums so far this election season, said candidate Lowell D. Huggins Sr.
"This is the best organized, it has the best questions," said Huggins, currently Chandler’s vice mayor.
Chandler candidates answered questions from students from Basha, Chandler and Hamilton high schools at the student-run forum.
Basha sophomore and forum leader Brittany Keiper said the forum, in the district’s main office on Frye Road, was an opportunity for the lines of communication to open between Chandler’s youth and the candidates.
"I think most adults are surprised by what students worry about," said the 16-year-old Keiper, who also is president of the speech and debate team and a member of student government.
All Chandler candidates except Bobby Joe Harris participated. They included council candidates Dean Anderson, Huggins, Dale Muravetz, Matt Orlando and Martin Sepulveda; and mayoral candidates John Conley and Boyd Dunn. Questions ranged from how candidates will stimulate jobs for youth in downtown Chandler and what the future holds for Chandler youth.
"The city’s future lies in your hands," Muravetz said. "You need to keep doing what you are doing here tonight and that’s staying involved."
He added that only 15 percent of Chandler’s residents voted in the last election.
"You need to do what your parents aren’t — voting."