What is a school Parliament?
A school Parliament is group of students who are elected to represent the views of all pupils and to improve their school. At the beginning of each academic year, a representative is elected from each class who is responsible for communicating the views and opinions of the other children in regular School Parliament meetings.
“School Parliament” means all kinds of school-based groups run by students, including student forums and youth parliaments.
What does a School parliament do?
A school Parliament does a number of things:
• The school Parliament meets – usually with a teacher present – to discuss and sort out problems. These may include school lunches, behaviour or ideas for fundraising events.
• Members of the school Parliament will be responsible for carrying out the ideas that have been agreed, such as planning discos, writing newspaper articles, or meeting with catering staff.
Democracy in action
Every child in the school has the opportunity to be elected to the school council. It is an entirely inclusive and transparent process.
At the beginning of the process, the children attend an assembly on the concept of democracy so that they know how important it is to make sure that everyone has the chance for their voice to be heard. Following this, every child is invited to put their name forwards for election. Sometimes there are many names on the ballot paper, sometimes there are few. Each candidate prepares and delivers a speech to the rest of her class which is designed to convey their suitability for the role. Then every child gets the chance to vote. The winner of the election will serve for the rest of the year.