Last week at St. Andrew’s School, there was a huge buzz around the school as we held hustings ahead of the General Election. Five of the potential candidates to become MP for Bath spent the morning at St. Andrew’s School. The candidates started by visiting each of the classrooms in turn, talking to the children and answering questions about their party policies: the environment, future technology and homelessness were issues that concerned all.
After a short break, the whole school, teachers and parents were invited to the hall to hear a two-minute presentation by each of the candidates: Steve Bradley (Liberal Democrats), Oliver Middleton (Labour), Dominic Tristram (Green Party), Ben Howlett (Conservative) and Loraine Morgan-Brinkhurst (Independent). Then, the candidates had to face questions from the floor!
Louis in year 1 asked “How will you make the world more grassy and stuff?” Diane in year 2 was concerned to know “Will you make Bath bigger?” which lead Ethan in year 3 to confirm “Will you make it smaller to make more green parts?” Logan in year 4 asked “What will you do to change the future?” Maya in year 5 was worried about food waste and Maisie in year 6 asked a challenging question about future technologies.
It was exciting to see the children ask such difficult questions, demonstrating their uncertainty about the future and desire to protect the environment and improve people’s lives.
The children then had the opportunity to vote using the council’s real election booths and an actual ballot box. At the count, it was incredible to see that all the children from year 1 to 6 had engaged in the political process choosing carefully and voting in secret.
And the winner is…?
Steve Bradley (Liberal Democrats)
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After lunch there was a full afternoon including an exhibition and concert of the children’s work this term on the BBC’s Ten Pieces, an Easter Bonnet parade and Easter competitions with prize-giving by the mayor, Cherry Beath. A new parent summed up how we all felt: “You’re all so impressive. I felt so proud to be a new part of St. Andrew’s today: what a fab school!”