Parliament Week - 2018

Parliament Week & Oxford Global Conference 2018

UK Parliament Week took place nationally from the 12th of November till the 18th of November 2018.

UK Parliament Week is an annual festival that engages people from across the UK with Parliament, explores what it means to them and empowers them to get involved. During this week, students at Eastbury engaged with Politics, explored ways to have our say and felt empowered to make a positive difference.

Events took place here at Eastbury every second break and students and staff came along and took part. Events included a Mock Teacher of the Term Election, where teacher candidates created their own manifesto and campaigned for everyone to vote.

We had 11 teacher candidates and manifestoes included Vote for me because:

  • I am the trendiest member of the humanities department (so I’ve been told)
  • Rumour has it I have saved someone’s life on a school trip after they ALMOST got left on the train platform – I am a hero!
  • I am a local candidate having previously attended Eastbury.
  • Written assessments to be replaced with trips. I have successfully taken groups of students to Poland and I am sure I can scale this up.
  • To celebrate my victory, we will open the first Eastbury Nando’s – we’ve gone long enough without peri-peri chicken and it’s time for a change.

Year 13 students then counted the votes and compiled a detailed analysis on voter turnout in lesson. Factors that affected turnout included: students may not have voted as they were in the canteen queues for lunch, some students may have been in break time detention, and staff may not have voted as they might have been on break duty or be planning their lessons. All in all, approximately 2000 participants were invited to take part in the election voting process and the turnout was 356 votes, including 5 tampered with, and wasted votes. The winner of the Teacher of the Term was Miss Papacosta with a landslide vote. Results were announced by Year 12’s in true political articulation and humour on Monday 26th November during whole school staff briefing and Mariana and Alicia from Year 12 awarded Miss Papacosta with a £20 Nandos vouchers as prize for teacher of the term. Miss Papacosta’s manifesto included:

  1. I’m fun, fabulous and fantastic
  2. I care about the future of the younger generation and helping them achieve the best they can without damaging their mental health
  3. I have also started a film club to provide students with a warm, welcoming, FUN FREE, FRIENDLY environment with snacks 

Other activities included an Equali-Tea Fundraising stall – raising money to provide more activities to help close the gap between young people and politics. A great success as students came along to indulge in some snacks at break for a good cause!

Another memorable event was the #Vote100 stall. As 2018 marks 100 years since Parliament passed a law which allowed the first women, and all men, to vote for the first time. Students and staff came along and put their fingerprint on our parliament mural – drawn by our very own Mr Durling! Each fingerprint represented a vote.

Parliament Week ended on the highest note possible as from Friday to Sunday 12 students from year 11 and 12 attended a residential Model UN debate conference trip at Oxford University. More information and photos on the next post.

Parliament Week was a great achievement and everyone involved in facilitating this felt it was a great way for people to help support closing the gap between young people and political democracy. After all, politics is the right step forward to empower young people to have a voice and to use that voice to lead change within society!

Miss T. Mizan