June 22, 2024

South West News

South West News from Gloucestershire to Cornwall

UK Parliament Week: Pupils from 21 Cornish schools visit council’s HQ to learn about democracy

More than 60 pupils from 21 schools visited the council’s headquarters in Truro on Thursday to learn about how democracy and the council works in Cornwall.

It was part of UK Parliament Week last week and saw the young people take part in a host of workshops and activities focusing on British values and children’s rights.

Aspire Academy Trust schools visited New County Hall as part of UK Parliament Week

The pupils were part of the Aspire Academy Trust and travelled to New County Hall from all over Cornwall.

One of the most popular activities saw them practising their debating skills in the council chamber, arguing for and against a motion that ‘all children should decide what time they go to bed’.

Aspire Academy Trust schools visited New County Hall as part of UK Parliament Week

They also took part in a mock election and listened to a talk by Newquay and St Austell MP Steve Double.

The event was attended by Cornwall councillors James Mustoe, Thalia Marrington, Dick Cole and Barbara Ellenbroek.

Cllr Ellenbroek, cabinet member for children and families, learning and skills, said:

“The energy and enthusiasm of these young people was fantastic to see. These were year 5 and 6 pupils and the insight and maturity of the questions they were asking really blew me away. This was a real eye-opener for me and increases yet again my belief that we have to engage much more with young people.”

Aspire Academy Trust schools visited New County Hall as part of UK Parliament Week

Cllr Cole, leader of Mebyon Kernow and Cornwall councillor for St Dennis and St Enoder, added:

“It was a really positive session. All the children were really engaged and I think there were actually a few lessons that that the senior politicians on the council could learn from these young people! Events like these are such important things to do and I was very happy to be able to help out. We councillors enjoyed it as much as the young people did.”

Aspire Academy Trust schools visited New County Hall as part of UK Parliament Week

Mark Harding, Year 6 teacher at Indian Queens School who helped co-ordinate the day on behalf of Aspire, said:

“It was great to see so many schools working collaboratively to help councillors shape the future of children across the county. We’ve had superb support from so many departments in County Hall who were so keen to share what they do with the children. The children had a fantastic time!”

Aspire Academy Trust schools visited New County Hall as part of UK Parliament Week

Young people also watched a short video about Cornwall Youth Council and were encouraged to get involved.

More information on the upcoming youth council elections can be found on the Let’s Talk Cornwall website.

Press release issued on November 14, 2023.

Source