☰ The Power of Democratic Process

The Power of Democratic Process

Posted on: September 19th 2014

Sam habgood

It’s been a pretty political few weeks of voting and seeing democracy in action: not just for the Scottish Referendum but our own election process for the School Council – campaigns and manifestos springing up all over the place. Excitingly, I know that the children have now been announced and will have a real voice within the school in determining some of the initiatives, as well as selecting our school charity, amongst other things. Having a voice and feeling listened to from a very early age and engaging with the understanding of democratic principles is something that is highly invaluable; having followed so much of the campaigning around the Scottish Referendum, what was most interesting was listening to a resident of North Lanarkshire who had been unemployed and apolitical for the majority of his life and who was now engaging in campaigning for other people to vote. He quoted that he’d ‘never bothered voting before, but this was something that [he] felt meant a huge opportunity for Scotland and was important.’ I found myself, if I’m truthful, being really excited as much by the process and what it was stirring up, as what the outcome would be - to me something that challenges the status quo and turns apathy into action is what’s often most important.

Whilst there was always going to be a close call on the Referendum, an engagement with the people of Scotland and having their voices heard had inspired almost 85% of the electorate to turn out to vote.

Hopefully, the kind of things that we build into our curriculum, with debate and philosophy, democratic voting and campaigning for our School Council, and learning about the democratic process and UK law and Government from a young age, whilst at Norfolk House prepares our pupils and excites them enough to take up subjects like Politics or Philosophy at higher levels of learning and will be turned into real use in their adulthood, so that they are politically aware and engaged adults, who appreciate the power of democracy. 

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