Primary school pupils have insight into democracy through crucial vote

Grove Primary School Democracy Day- Emerald House

Grove Primary School Democracy Day- Emerald House - Credit: Archant

As UK voters took to the ballot box to make one of the biggest political decisions of recent history, one Lowestoft primary school gave its pupils an early insight into democracy.

Grove Primary School held two votes in as many weeks as pupils elected new house captains, before parents, governors, staff and children all participated in a referendum on whether or not to name a new classroom 'Ivy'.

The two events aimed to introduce children to the democratic process and emphasise the importance of exercising their right to vote.

Pupils listened to speeches from candidates wishing to become captain of the school houses- Emerald, Diamond, Ruby and Sapphire, before voters made their way to the voting booth.

Headteacher Andrea Hall explained:

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'It was great to see the house captains developing their speaking skills by demonstrating how they can articulate and justify answers, arguments and opinion,' said Mrs Hall.

The school also participated in a referendum on whether to name a new classroom Ivy. Arguments were put forward both for and against the proposal in a heated assembly.

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Those arguing 'for', pointed out ivy is the symbol of friendship and Greek poets wore ivy crowns to keep their thoughts flowing.

However, the opposition pointed out gardeners consider ivy to be a parasitic plant which smothers its host.

On voting day, 89 parents opted in favour of naming the classroom Ivy, however the results the saw 'no' campaign triumphing.

Language and Enrichment coordinator at Grove, Catherine Godet added:

'A recent survey revealed that the main reason people do not take part in elections is that they do not believe their vote will make a difference.

'We hope that, by understanding from a very young age how powerful their voice is, pupils are more likely to fully engage with the democratic process when they are older.'

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