Class and School Council at Shaw Primary Academy
At Shaw we have are proud to have pupil representatives that take part in Class and School Council meetings. These councils are in place so that pupils have a voice and are involved in decisions about the school that affect them. Through Class Council all pupils have the opportunity to raise issues, share ideas and take part in discussions that involve all of their classmates in reaching a democratic solution. Wider issues that arise at Class Council are discussed further at School Council, this ensures that as many pupil voices as possible are heard. Pupils at Shaw know that this is their school and their thoughts and ideas matter.
Class council officials should be nominated and then voted in by their class mates – they should not be chosen by their teachers.
Elections should be held half termly.
The Chair should lead the meetings with you coaching and modelling if necessary – the longer term idea is that children can do this virtually unaided.
An ‘agenda’ (either a whiteboard or laminated sheet of card) will be on the wall throughout the week with a whiteboard pen easily accessible.
Throughout the week children will jot any issues, concerns, worries or ideas etc. that they wish to discuss at the class council meeting.
At the meeting the Chair will raise the first item on the agenda and invite the person who wrote it to explain their point of view.
The Chair then invites the rest of the class to discuss the matter and reach some sort of resolution.
The Secretary then makes a note of what has been decided in the minutes.
If the resolution can be reached by adjusting something in class or by speaking to a member of the leadership team, then it need not be taken to School Council.
If the resolution is something that the class feels should be shared with School Council to allow wider discussion then a note will be made in the minutes to make this clear.
REPEAT ABOVE FOR OTHER AGENDA ITEMS
Class Council members should bring the minute book to School Council and raise any relevant issues for wider discussion and whole school resolution.
Some examples – On the agenda a child has written ‘no pencil sharpeners or rubbers’, the chair invites that child to explain their point and they may say that they can never find one, or the sharpeners never work etc. The class will then discuss their points of view and all agree a way forward. The resolution may be that the class teacher is going to get some more for the class and they will be stored in a certain place, may be worth a monitor etc. The secretary writes this down and the next item on the agenda is discussed. This item does not need to go to School Council as it has been resolved at class level.
Next item, ‘Broken playground toys/equipment’ the chair invites the writer to explain their point and further discussion takes place as above. The resolution may be that all children in the school need to be reminded about playing appropriately with the toys, or perhaps they have a suggestion for a change to the way the toys are given out etc. This item should go to School Council for discussion because it affects all children and requires wider discussion and resolution; this is minuted and taken to School Council.
School Council then discusses the matter using the same structure as Class Council; the resolution at school council may be that the Class Council officials simply remind their classes about appropriate play etc. They may want to speak with a senior member of staff with an alternative suggestion; any number of resolutions may be reached by the School Council members.
School Council visit the House of Parliament
On Wednesday Mrs Vorster took our KS2 School Council members to see the Houses of Parliament. They caught an early train and spent the morning touring the House of Commons and the House of Lords, finding out about its history and how democracy works at a national level. Everyone was awestruck seeing the Queen’s Robing Room and the golden throne that she sits on during the State Opening of Parliament.
School Council Visit to the Mayoral Chambers
20 School Council members went to the Mayoral Chamber in Grays to learn about democracy at a local level.They met with our current Mayoress who answered lots of questions about her role and how she got the job.They were taken into the main Council Chamber where they sat in the councillors’ chairs and held their own mini School Council meeting chaired by Maddison, Joseph and the Mayoress.After that they went to the Mayoral Parlour where they tried on her robe, hat and other regalia.Everyone who attended was awarded with a pencil and rubber stamped with the council crest. Everyone has a fantastic time and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
Parliament Week at Shaw Primary Academy
Next week we are taking part in Parliament Week (week beginning 17th November) which will enable our pupils to gain more knowledge and understanding of parliamentary democracy, why we have a parliament and how we are able to vote. It will also enable pupils to explore what means to them and their community. The children will also learn more about Class and School Council by taking part in a series of activities throughout the week. Watch this space for more information and pictures!