Why Do we Need School Councils ?
For many years, all the decisions about children were made by adults. This was thought to be the best because adults are older and have more experience, training and qualifications. But adults didn’t always make the right decisions, sometimes because they hadn’t talked with the children about the issue. Sometimes the children’s ideas were better than the adults!
So, all the countries of the world got together and agreed that children must be given rights. They created a law, it was called the Convention on the Rights of Children. Governments decided that adults must listen to children before making a decision about them.
Article 12 of The Convention of the Rights of the Child
Article 12 states that children have the right to say what they think should happen, when adults are making decisions that affect them, and to have their opinions taken into account.
Just think about of all the decisions that are made about your school. You, and probably all the other children in your school would have some ideas about these decisions. But how can the teachers listen to all the ideas? That would take too long, and nothing would get done. Pupils needed a way of discussing issues, and making decisions which would help everyone in school.
Schools work better when pupils and teachers are working together and listening to each other. The School Council is just one way of listening to children’s views and making better decisions.
Our School Council is a group of Year 1 and Year 2 children from school who meet to talk and solve problems, raise awareness of some events going on in school and help us all to be more involved with the wider school community.
Our School Council is fair, democratic and friendly. We work together to make sure everyone in school feels part of our community.
How does School Council work?
Every term a class election is held. This will involve the names of children who are interested in being School Council members being added to a voting list. Everyone will then have the opportunity to vote for one person from the list, who they would like to represent the class. The votes will be counted. The boy and girl who have the most votes in each class will represent the class, for that term, on the School Council.
Photographs will be displayed of members on the School Council notice board in the entrance hall. Meetings are held once a week.
The School Councillor’s Role
School Councillors are elected by the pupils in their class to:
Attend School Council meetings and take part in discussions
Inform the class what was discussed at meetings
- Articulate the views of their peers at School Council meetings.
What happens at School Council Meetings?
School Councillors bring to meetings ideas which have come from classes or adult staff in school. These will be discussed and decisions made.
The School Council discuss many agenda items throughout the year. Some examples of the issues that are frequently discussed at meetings are:
Healthy eating and school lunchtimes
Organisation of the Dining Room
Reducing use of plastic in school