14 NOV 2016

Dr Dan marks UK Parliament Week in Central Suffolk and North Ipswich

Ahead of UK Parliament week which runs from Monday 14 to Friday 20 November, Dr Dan visited a number of primary schools across Central Suffolk and North Ipswich and was delighted to meet pupils representing their individual school councils.

What really impressed Dr Dan was the enthusiasm and dedication with which the children take their role on the school council. This demonstrates the level of interest and engagement our young people feel with our democracy and while many may feel that people are becoming disengaged with politics, the opposite certainly seems to be ringing true in our younger generations here in Suffolk.

School councils are an excellent way for children to learn about democracy at a very early age and it gives them a voice within their school community. They are made up of a group of students who are elected to represent their fellow students' views. The election process to become a class representative can be hotly contested and Dr Dan very much enjoyed hearing tales of the election tactics and voting process from a number of the children. It was clear to Dr Dan that the pupils take great pride in their role and see it as a way to make changes for the better within their own school community.

School councils are a great platform for students to gain further confidence in public speaking, putting forward the views of their fellow students and making the case for their suggestions; these could be anything from fundraising for new playground equipment, suggesting a change to the school uniform or even initiatives to look out for each other and prevent bullying.

One of the key factors in a successful school council is undoubtedly communication. This can be communication between students to make sure that their ideas are heard, but also communication between staff and Governors, all of whom are working closely together to enhance the school environment.

The role of school councillor helps to further develop essential life skills such working together as a team, communication skills, learning to listen to and respect each other and then to reach a compromise when all sides of the conversation have been put forward. These are all valuable skills which will be needed as children progress through their education and then ultimately into their chosen careers.

UK Parliament Week is an annual festival which has been developed by the Houses of Parliament as part of its Outreach and Engagement service, and it has become a platform for schools to become more involved with Parliament from across the UK, exploring what Parliament and democracy means and encouraging them to become more involved. With over 250 events and activities taking place across the country, from workshops and discussions, to film screenings and historical archives and, UK Parliament Week is a fantastic opportunity to find out how you can better make your voice heard and learn more about the workings of Parliament.


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Dr Dan's work in Parliament

NHS Wholly Owned Subsidiary Companies — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (6 Mar 2018)
Daniel Poulter: The Minister is slightly at odds about the point being made. The point is not how it is open to the trust to procure the best clinical services but how, later, through a company, staff might be re-employed on a lower salary. Clearly, trusts already have flexibility through “Agenda for Change” to start people on a higher pay point, but I wondered more generally whether my hon....

NHS Wholly Owned Subsidiary Companies — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (6 Mar 2018)
Daniel Poulter: The hon. Lady and her colleagues are right to highlight the fact that the financial pressure on the NHS is the main driver for this situation. Does she agree that it is very difficult in some services to differentiate between administrators and back-office services, and frontline services? Sometimes, administrators and back-office workers are embedded in clinical teams, and this actually...