St Mary’s have decided to change the way School Council is run across the school so that more children can be involved and have a voice so that change can happen and everyone can benefit from the impact.
Traditional school councils are a great way to introduce democracy to young people but the same problems come up every year:
This year, we have signed up to SMART SCHOOL COUNCIL which is an online platform where all children are able to express their views and opinions through class discussions and meetings.
The School Council Is made up of two teams:
The communication Team
A Communication Team is a small group of students who take over the running of the Smart School Council Model.
The Communication Team don’t act like a traditional school council. They don’t decide and do everything themselves. Their main job is to set up meetings and encourage as many students as possible to get involved.
Each member of the Communication Team takes on a particular role.
Their job is to communicate and facilitate rather than doing things for people.
At the moment they run meetings within the classroom and share results.
Eventually they will be setting up meetings online. The will facilitate the meetings in class but other children will have the chance to lead them.
The Communication Team’s job is to facilitate, encourage and communicate involvement. They don’t represent their class.
The Action Team
Any student from across the school can set up an Action Team. To set up an Action Team, the student has to propose key information and supporters to get it agreed. Action Teams will be given time at lunchtime to work on their projects. The projects may be short term or long term depending on what the team wants to achieve.
The communication team at the moment are also taking the lead on the action team but eventually the Action Teams will be groups of pupils who create a club, campaign or activity to create change.
Class Meetings are super-snappy, pupil-led meetings held in every class. They should take about 5-10 minutes. All children have a voice and can add ideas or want to start an Action team.
For the Autumn term The communications team led two class meetings about school lunches and what children like and dislike.
From the results, some of the communication team will meet with Charity and someone from Ashlyns to discuss the realistic changes they would like to see on certain days of the week.
The kitchen will hopefully take on some of the changes within reason.
The communications will present their findings in a whole school assembly and all children will see the impact at lunchtimes.