The School Parliament: The Voice
At the Crypt listening and responding to “the pupil voice” is very important to our ethos. Not only do pupils deserve to be heard and consulted on issues concerning them but they also need to develop the skills of forming a point of view and putting it across in a reasoned and effective manner.
The School Parliament is an integral and extremely effective focus for pupil voice at the Crypt. Representatives are involved from each year group. Their role is to put forward and discuss any issues concerning them and their peers. Meetings take place once a term, to give enough time for pupils to come up with their own ideas for issues which are important to them. These meetings have formal agendas and minutes, which are then submitted to the school’s senior management team for action. The School Parliament is also allocated its own budget which is has full control over.
The work of the School Parliament is wide-ranging and therefore is divided into 3 areas:
- Curriculum and learning
- Pastoral/well being
Each Parliament section is led by two members of the Student Executive from Year 13 and overseen by a senior member of staff. In recent years, effective lobbying from our student voice groups has seen the introduction of food technology onto the curriculum, a complete redesign of the pupils’ toilet block, and a major development of the school’s outdoor “quiet” areas with the building of a canopy and seating. Future plans include student input into identifying and sharing best practice in the classroom, identifying where students need more knowledge in order to better manage their own mental health and auditing our extra-curricular offer to ensure it covers as broad a range of student interests as possible.
The role the School Parliament plays is a highly respected one and its representatives are frequently asked to join interview panels for new member of staff. Not only is it is a thoroughly rewarding experience for those pupils who get involved in the Parliament, but its work also impacts significantly on the whole school community, making the Crypt a place where its pupils can feel that their voices are heard and that they can make a difference to their school and to themselves.
We also seek to listen to a broad cross section of student voice wherever possible and will continue to do so through areas like the bi-annual Year 8, 10 and 12 Gloucestershire Online Pupil Survey, Year 11 and 13 student end of year surveys, Co-education development surveys and Head of Year and tutor interviews.