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School Children From Riccall Get a Taste of Democracy in Action

Selby District Council

12:17pm 10th June 2014

Members of Riccall Community Primary School's School Council toured the Civic Centre and met and debated with councillors during the visit today.

Deputy Chief Executive of Selby District Council, Jonathan Lund met with the five school representatives to give them a guided tour of the Civic Centre and Vice Chair of the Council Councillor Richard Sweeting and Councillor Stephanie Duckett were on hand to answer their questions about democracy in the community.
Cllr Sweeting said:

"This is an exciting opportunity to bring together local elected politicians with the future generation of electors."

"I hope that this event will encourage young people to get more involved in the work of councils to encourage them to take an active part in the political process when they are old enough to vote."

"These school children will be able to see where decisions that affect their community are taken and have the chance to understand how the council works."

"As well as showing them the Council chamber, we discussed with them how the Council works, what it does and how we reach decisions. I hope that they came away with an insight into the role of the council in their local community."

Head teacher of Riccall Community Primary School, Sam O'Brien, said:

"This has been a great visit for the children to be involved with; it's really exciting to see them understand democracy in action and realise that their opinions and views will matter."

"This visit has also helped set in context important aspects of our Rights Respecting School work about the values underpinning the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC)."

Lindsey Ryan, Clerk and Finance Officer at Riccall Parish Council facilitates the meetings for the Student Council:

"It's really good to start early and encourage the children to think about their role in representing their classmates and about how important that role is. We hold a real election each September at the school and borrow a polling booth and ballot box from Selby District Council and the children really embrace the idea of democracy. The trip today shows the children how democracy works at a different level, which will be interesting for them."

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