The Student Council is not a new thing at the school, student voice has been a part of the fabric for a long time and the new wave of students will be hoping to build on the excellent work done by Miss Mitchell and last year’s co-leaders Tristan Smith and Michael Du Plessis.
I strongly believe independent learning is fostered by a school environment which is democratic and responsive to the needs of students. If we are to build functional communities of practice, where groups of people share a concern or passion for something and learn how to do it better as they interact, then we need to engage the whole community in the process.
Today saw the start of that process for this academic year when students had the chance to elect their new leader of the School Council. In a change to last year’s format we will have two school councils, one for Key Stage 3 and the other for both Key Stage 4 & 5. The school council is a very important aspect of life at BISS Puxi, we are very conscious of the need for our students to understand the democratic process and to engage in it in order to improve the teaching and learning within their school environment.
The process today was a combination of new and old with students mixing the traditional election speeches and voting formats with a digital twist. All students wishing to run for the post of leader of the School Council submitted a two minute video outlining their reasons for wanting to take on this role and how they would improve the learning environment for their peers; students could run as individual candidates or as a pair. These videos were then shown in an assembly and students used their iPads to vote through Survey Monkey.
We had a good number of candidates hoping to be elected to leader of their respective phase of the Student Council. I am very pleased to report that the quality of the videos and the passion the students demonstrated in their speeches was excellent. Each student offered their views on the school and made suggestions as to how they would improve the school if they were elected. This simply left me the task of counting the votes, and I am pleased to report that the students elected to these key positions are Benjamin Delgado for Key Stage 3 and Kelly Kim and Johnny Yeng for Key Stage 4 & 5.
The next steps for us are for the newly elected leaders to meet with and for us to discuss their proposals for school improvement. These will then be taken to the school to refine and discuss. Once this has been completed we will begin the process of implementing any changes.
It is clear democracy is alive and well at BISS Puxi and I am looking forward to working with Ben, Kelly and Johnny to further improve the learning environment over the coming school year.
Paul Kelly, Deputy Head of Secondary (Pastoral)