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Danes Hills Year 8 School Council members undertook a very unique experience as they were immersed in a heated debate on Britains exit from Europe, or Brexit, in the House of Commons.
The young Council members caught the debate during an intriguing tour of the Palace of Westminster, during which they learned all about the colourful history of the world-famous building and the important but very different roles which the Lords and Commons play. They also saw a true piece of history in the shape of the original suffragette banner which was thrown into the debating chamber.
It was a wonderfully informative tour and the students could hardly contain their excitement as they were given the opportunity to watch a real debate in action and view the difficulties the Speaker had in managing the debate. Then, it was over to the pupils as they were tasked with engineering their own political campaign for a range of causes, including banning the ivory trade and reducing overcrowding on trains. This proved a real eye-opener into just how challenging some policies in this country can be.
The London visit was brought to a fitting end with a brisk walk across Westminster Bridge under the crisp winter sunshine and a hot chocolate at the Festival Hall. The students will consolidate all that they learnt during the visit by presenting their feedback to their tutor groups. Most importantly, we are certain that the visit will give these nominated students the inspiration to campaign hard and effectively for the students who elected them to the Council.