Democracy is put to the test by youngsters at two schools

Coten End pupils.
Coten End pupils.
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Pupils at two schools have been learning about politics and elections.

To mark the General Election and learn about democracy, Coten End School held a special themed day. Children in all year groups took part in a range of activities to teach them how Britain’s democratic process works and give them the opportunity to develop their debating skills.

Children in Foundation Stage enjoyed exploring their polling station role-play area and learned how to vote using a ballot paper. They tried other methods of voting, too, and discussed which was the fairest and most effective.

Key Stage 1 children had a teacher swap for the morning and tried formulating and expressing their views about given issues, such as whether children should have to bring in a healthy snack at playtime. The teachers were really impressed with how well they expressed their opinions and listened to each other.

Key Stage 2 children learned about what happens inside the House of Commons and how it was established.

At North Leamington School, four pupils canvassed for votes from their peers in a week-long election campaign.

With students representing the Liberal Democrats (Hazeem), Conservatives (Michael) and Labour (Sophia), one ambitious student (Dylan) established his own independent party and proffered his own policies.

During the week the candidates faced questions topics as diverse as tuition fees, the fairness of the existing electoral system and Trident.

In the poll, Hazeem was elected as the pupils’ representative with Sophia a close second – only two per cent of the votes cast separating them.

Hazeem said: “It was a great experience, I would just underline that I feel it is massively important for young people to be as involved as they can be in the political process.”