This is such an effective way of engaging pupils in the democratic process. Our School Council and Participation Groups love it and are already using the information to plan the school developments they want. They learn so much about how schools work, where the finance comes from and what others think of their ideas.
They really have to think critically about the issues which arise and are keen to further explore some of the topics they are unfamiliar with, distinguishing between fact and opinion when making choices.
Anna Bolt – Glyncollen Primary School
The student council did an amazing job and managed to get over 100 students at the school engaged today amassing an impressive 2385 interactions, 52 ideas and 350 comments..
Some students even took the initiative to engage in the big conversation around the Swansea Well-being Plan and in Morriston, their local ward.
Ideas such as Plastic Free School & More Cycle Training came out as some of the highest priorities!
Here’s a flavour of some lovely feedback from students participating..
Pupil Voice is an important aspect of education in Wales where the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC, 1989) is statutory. The UNCRC sets out a set of participation rights for children that includes the right to a voice, to be listened to, to exercise agency and negotiate meanings with others.
The aim in Wales is for fundamental children’s rights’ principles to become embedded within the policies and practices of all who work with and on behalf of children and young people. Many schools want to go beyond the statutory requirement to establish a School Council to fully integrate pupil voice into the school community. Cardiff is on a three year journey to become the first Child Friendly City in Wales and is committed to continuous consultation with Children and Young People (CYP).
First-past-the-post voting methods can be used for single- and multiple-member electoral divisions. In a single-member election, the candidate with the highest number (but not necessarily a majority) of votes is elected. In a multiple-member election (or multiple-selection ballot), each voter casts (up to) the same number of votes as there are positions to be filled, and those elected are the highest-placed candidates corresponding to that number of positions. For example, if there are three vacancies, then the three candidates with the greatest numbers of votes are elected.
The Electoral Reform Society is a political pressure group based in the United Kingdom that advocates abolishing the first-past-the-post method (FPTP) for all elections. It argues FPTP is "bad for voters, bad for government and bad for democracy". It is the oldest organisation concerned with electoral methods in the world.
As of 2014, all U.S. states other than Maine and Nebraska use a winner-take-all form of simple plurality, first-past-the-post voting, to appoint the electors of the Electoral College. Under the typical method, the presidential candidate gaining the greatest number of votes wins all of the state's available electors, regardless of the number or share of votes won, or the difference separating the leading candidate and the first runner-up.
The multiple-round election ("runoff") voting method uses first-past-the-post voting method in each of two rounds. The first round determines which candidates will progress to the second and final round.
The prototypical delegative democracy has been summarized by Bryan Ford in his paper, Delegative Democracy, containing the following principles:
Choice of role: Each member can choose to take either a passive role as an individual or an active role as a delegate, differentiating this from representative forms in which only specified representatives are allowed. Delegates have further choices as to how active they are and in what areas.
Low barrier to participation: The difficulty and cost of becoming a delegate is small, and in particular does not require political campaigning or winning a competitive election.
Delegated authority: Delegates exercise power in organizational processes on behalf of themselves and individuals who select them as their delegate. Different delegates, therefore, can exercise varying levels of decision power.
Privacy of the individual: To avoid social pressures or coercion, all votes made by individuals are private, both from other individuals and from delegates.
Accountability of the delegates: To ensure the accountability of delegates to their voters and to the community at large, all formal deliberative decisions made by delegates are completely public (or in some forms viewable only to their constituents).
Specialization by re-delegation: Delegates can not only act directly on behalf of individuals as generalists, but through re-delegation can they also act on behalf of each other as specialists.