While everyone recognises that the first Police Commissioners elections were not a triumph of democratic engagement, some also view them as symptomatic of a lack of interest in public affairs generally.
National elections still demand attention but European elections and council elections much less so. It is more de rigeur to vote in reality TV shows.
Most schools work to engage children in political issues, particularly ones around the broad area of conservation. As young people go through secondary school they will be exposed to ideas that start to shape their political opinions. Many will run school councils or other forums for children to experience something of the democratic process.
Then along with the structures of democracy, comes the acquiring of knowledge that gives participation in decision making some meaning and schools are vital to that process too as they are to a culture of listening, reflecting and considering different points of views.
But schools cant do everything. Local and national youth parliaments run by the public sector help and young peoples interest can be whipped up by highly-publicised national campaigning groups as happened with anti-Iraq war protests.
This week is Parliament Week with MPs and celebrities discussing aspects of democracy in order to stimulate debate so people do try. Local events too can encourage higher levels of awareness and one is coming up in Birmingham at the University of Aston.
A day conference on November 24 under the joint banner of Christian Aid, Jubilee Debt Campaign and a number of local Birmingham organisations aims to bring together people from across the West Midlands to consider the causes and impact of the financial crisis and what can be done to start building a society based on economic justice and one that puts people before profits.
It is good for young people to see the city in which they live, actively engaged in political debate.
There is no one solution to getting people out to vote and we need to keep going at the many pronged approach. Behind every attempted needs to be the recognition that everyone matters not just the celebrities or politicians or those who shout loudest but everyone.
* Sarah Evans, Principal, King Edward VI High School for Girls