Start a Chapter

Local chapters, located within individual high schools and communities across the country, make up the pulse of the High School Democrats of America and LAHSD. Members on the local level work on campaigns, hold fundraisers, and even run for office themselves in order to improve their communities and turn their districts blue.

ESTABLISHING A LOCAL CHAPTER

LAHSD is composed of two distinct types of local chapters. If you are interested in starting a school chapter, go to the Starting a Chapter at Your School section. If you are interested in starting a community chapter, go to the Starting a Chapter in Your Community section.

HSDA’s Starting a Local Chapter Guide can be an extremely useful resource as you explore starting a LAHSD chapter.


STARTING A CHAPTER AT YOUR SCHOOL

You’ll need a teacher or administrator to serve as an advisor, a mission statement and/or a constitution and bylaws, and as many interested students as possible.

Step 1: Find other students interested in starting a school chapter. We strongly recommend at least 3.

Step 2: Find a teacher or administrator who will serve as your advisor. Discuss your ideas/plans with them.

Step 3: Talk to your administrators and/or principals. Have either yourself or your advisor ensure that your chapter follows your school’s rules on clubs and extra-curricular activities.

Step 4: Hold your first meeting. A good time is before or after school, or even during lunch! Remember that you will need to hold Officer Elections at one of your first meetings.

Step 5: Register your chapter online by using this form on HSDA’s website. Make sure your members fill out this digital membership form as well.

Step 6: Wait for a member of the LAHSD Executive Board to reach out to you with more information!


STARTING A CHAPTER IN YOUR COMMUNITY

This option is more likely to be used in the event that you fail to secure administrative approval for a school-based chapter, or are located in an area with a lower number of interested individuals.

Step 1: Find other students interested in starting a local chapter. We strongly recommend at least 3.

Step 2: Find a community member who will serve as your advisor. Discuss your ideas/plans with them.

Step 3: Choose a location to have weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly meetings with the help of your advisor. Coffee shops, book stores, parks, and homes work well. Remember that all locations should be handicap accessible and prepare for the needs of your members.

Step 4: Hold your first meeting. We recommend meetings to take place on afternoons or during the weekend. Remember that you will need to hold Officer Elections at one of your first meetings.

Step 5: Register your chapter online by using this form on HSDA’s website. Make sure your members fill out this digital membership form as well.

Step 6: Wait for a member of the LAHSD Executive Board to reach out to you with more information!