Local students quiz prospective Members of Parliament for Filton and Bradley Stoke

Patchway Community College - Politics Debate

Over 130 sixth form students at Patchway Community College took local politicians to task on Friday (12th February) over issues facing the country in the next General Election.

In a tutorial session earlier in the week students had discussed key issues of particular interest to them and prepared some questions that were put forward to prospective parliamentary candidates from the three main political parties.

Taking part in the session were (pictured L-R, centre of photo): Jack Lopresti (Conservative), Ian Boulton (Labour) and Peter Tyzack (Liberal Democrat) – all prospective candidates for the new Filton and Bradley Stoke parliamentary constituency.

Questions from the students were very diverse, including university and tuition fees, the health system, Afghanistan, and immigration.

Afterwards, the students were divided at random into five groups to represent each of five political parties. They carried out further research on the web so they could create a campaign and select student candidates in preparation for a mock election in the afternoon.

Head of Sixth Form Ian Trevarthen said:

“This day represented a superb opportunity to raise our students’ awareness of political issues at both local and national level.”

“The students were full of enthusiasm throughout the day, and welcomed the chance to hear first-hand answers to their questions.”

“We were very impressed with the student party leaders who delivered confident and well-informed presentations to their peers.”

Winner of the mock election was Lewis Gregor, aged 18, representing the Conservative Party, who received 30% of the votes cast.

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