Our School Council: Rights Ambassadors
Our school council is a formal group of pupils who act as representatives of their classmates in discussing school issues with the Mrs Bailey (Head) and Miss King (School Council Facilitator). It’s a brilliant way of representing and contributing to Pupil Voice in our school. Students are elected to represent the views of all students and also to improve our school.
They help to make decisions about how our school is run and take on projects that support the children’s learning and development, such as organising charity events, representing the school at outside events or ensuring the school is environmentally friendly. Our school council are elected in a democratic process. Children stand for election, make a manifesto speech to their class and a vote is held. This is one of our core British Values - Democracy.
This year our school council are focusing on introducing children's rights to our school. All children in the world have rights - no matter what! - and these are listed in The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). In fact, Article 12 of the UNCRC says that children and young people should have a say in decisions that affect their lives. So our school council provides a meaningful way in which pupils can voice their opinions and have their views taken into account in decisions that impact upon them.
Our school council will be talking about rights to their classes and supporting the teaching of rights in assemblies. Each class will then make a list of rights that they would like to focus on in school and their school councillors will bring their suggestions to meetings, where the most popular will become our school focused rights. Even though we will have our focused school rights, all children's rights will be respected in school. We will be learning about ensuring we have rights for ourselves, but also ensuring we are respectful that other's receive their rights too.
Our School Council: Rights Ambassadors are: Bella, Laurie, Kaira, Zara, Orrin, Millie and Barney.
You can see our school council meeting minutes below.
Our whole school contributed to choosing these five articles from the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child to focus on.
Article 12 - Right to a Voice, Article 15 - Right to meet with friends and join clubs, Article 28 - Right to an education, Article 29 - Right to be the best you can be and Article 31 - Right to relax and play.
Our whole school learnt about many rights in assemblies. In assembly, we made a long-list of the rights the children wanted to focus on in school and then School Council: Rights Ambassadors chose the final five. See the Powerpoint below from this assembly.
Following this a whole school charter was created– an agreement, with all signing up to respect our own and other’s rights. This was designed by our School Council: Rights Ambassadors. Children chose handprints in the shape of a rainbow to reflect being part of the Rainbow MAT family and handprints to be inclusive. All children in our school could sign up with a handprint.
Children do not have any responsibility in order to access their rights as rights are unconditional.
Children are the Rights Holders and adults are the Duty Bearers to uphold children’s rights.
Our charter is not a set of rules, but is a visual reminder of our agreement; to strive to develop responsible behaviours through respecting our rights and those of others.
Penponds School is a Rights Respecting School.
As part of two of our focused rights, Right to a Voice and Right to an Education, we are asking our school community to help us name our new school curriculum and design a logo once we have decided on the new name. See the poster to contribute below!