Curwen’s School Council set out to make meaningful changes to the school and the community as well as supporting global causes each year.
Houses of Parliament Visit
We started the term with a trip to The Houses of Parliament and learned about democracy in Britain and got the chance to see where all the decisions about the country are made during a tour of both the House of Lords and The House of Commons. We also took part in a workshop about representation, giving us our first opportunity to make decisions together and work as a team. It was the perfect way to start the year!
Improving the playground
The first task of the term was to find ways to improve the school. We realised that a lot of the suggestions in our suggestion boxes were about the playground so we decided to start here. After interviewing children outside and speaking to staff we realised there is a need for more quiet spaces around the school. We feel it will improve children’s well-being and help them learn in the afternoons. Teachers we asked agreed, many saying they thought it would help improve concentration and learning time in the afternoons. A lot of children commented that our playground is a lot of fun and there are many great activities to enjoy but that it can sometimes feel noisy and overwhelming if they are feeling down or tired.
We have been working with the Headstart Champions to decide what these areas should look like. During Kindness Week the Headstart Champions offered a ‘Chill & Chat’ service where children could come and speak to a Headstart Champion about what was on their mind or just for a chat! The feedback was very positive so we have been working together to include ‘Chill and Chat’ into our quiet spaces. We presented our plans to Mrs Mansfield, Ms White and other teachers in the leadership team. Then we asked children what they wanted in these spaces before meeting with Friends of Curwen who kindly offered their support to help us buy resources to make sure the space are welcoming and relaxing. Next term we will be trialling the spaces in the Key Stage Two playground with the Headstart Champions and the peer mentors. We’re excited to see how the spaces will work!
Council members Grace, Adam, Elise and Adib met the rest of the Pupil Parliament at the start of the school year. They decided that the theme they wanted to focus on in the community was mental health. Our mission this year is to continue to promote mental health within the school and reach out to the wider community; the school council will therefore be hosting a Wellness Festival next summer. Our preparations will begin in the New Year. We look forward to working with the Pupil Parliament and other student leaders on the project as well as organisations such as WE and local charities. We want the festival to highlight to people the support that is out there for them as well as sharing strategies and advice to maintain good mental health. Our intention is to bring people together and help them find support that could last a lifetime.
Our first step was to run a craft stall during the Christmas Fair, raising money for the mental health charity, MIND. We handed out leaflets to everyone who purchased something from the school so that we could raise money as well as awareness.
Our aims for Spring Term:
- Trial the quiet spaces in the KS2 playground
- Work with other student leaders to begin organising our Wellness 2020 Festival
- Continue to fundraise for MIND
- Provide fruit for children in KS2 at break times
- Have a school Council suggestion afternoon across the school