Torbay Children's Parliament Competition
The purpose of the Torbay Children's Parliament is to:
- Provide an exciting opportunity for children to present their views to adults of influence and to see that they really can make a difference in a political way;
- Engage young people in the democratic process;
- Gain insight into the views of young people on key issues for the Council;
- Encourage intra-school and inter-school debate;
- Develop young people’s communication skills.
More information about the format of the competition is given in the document below.
Torbay Children's Parliament competition 2023
The Riviera International Centre in Torquay was alive with energy and enthusiasm on Friday 23rd May 2023, as students from ten local primary schools participated in the Children's Parliament 2023 competition.
Organised by the Riviera Education Trust in partnership with Torbay Council, this event aimed to empower primary school children and amplify their voices on the pressing issue of homelessness and housing.
The timing of the Children's Parliament 2023 competition, just days before the launch of HRH Prince William's 'Homewards' campaign, provided a unique platform for these young voices to contribute to the ongoing dialogue surrounding homelessness.
The participating schools included Barton Hill Academy, Kings Ash Academy, Oldway Primary, Priory Catholic Primary, Roselands Primary, Sacred Heart Catholic Primary, Shiphay Learning Academy, Upton St James CE Primary, Watcombe Primary, and White Rock Primary.
A distinguished panel of judges comprised representatives from Torbay Council: Anne-Marie Bond, Chief Executive; Rachael Williams, Divisional Director of Education, Learning & Skills; Nick Holland, Team Leader of the Housing Options Team; and Councillor Hayley Tranter, Cabinet Member for Adult and Community Services, Public Health and Inequalities. Kevin Foster, Member of Parliament for Torbay, was the fifth member of the panel.
The presentations were a testament to the students' dedication and extensive research on the topic. Some teams presented compelling facts and figures, while others captivated the audience through role play and creative storytelling techniques. Notably, several schools highlighted Finland's successful efforts in reducing homelessness.
The judging panel and audience actively engaged with the participants, asking questions to gauge their understanding of the subject matter. The event fostered a dynamic exchange of ideas, allowing the students to showcase their comprehensive grasp of the issue and their proposed solutions.
Following the school presentations, Kevin Foster MP expressed his gratitude to the children for their exceptional efforts and commended their insightful presentations. In addition to discussing homelessness and housing, Mr Foster took questions from the students, addressing a wide range of topics such as his parliamentary responsibilities, life in the House of Commons, and the government's actions regarding homelessness.
The judging criteria encompassed three key aspects: content and understanding, communication skills, and creativity and originality. Schools were also able to score their peers following each presentation. After the scores had been checked and verified, the results were announced:
1st Place: Sacred Heart Catholic Primary 2nd Place: Upton St James CE Primary 3rd Place: Shiphay Learning Academy
To celebrate their accomplishments, pupils in each of these schools received medals, with Sacred Heart Catholic Primary also awarded a £100 Amazon voucher. Furthermore, pupils from the winning school will embark on an exciting trip to the Houses of Parliament on 11th July. They will be treated to a personal tour by local MP Kevin Foster and have the opportunity to observe a public debate from the gallery. The Trust is grateful to the Blue Spark Foundation for their grant funding that helps make this possible.
Looking ahead, the success of the Children's Parliament 2023 competition has set the stage for an even more promising event next year. Riviera Education Trust and Torbay Council anticipate hosting the competition in late June 2024, with the theme yet to be decided.
Torbay Children's Parliament competition 2022