What is TMSA Student parliament?
Our Student Parliament represents the voice of the student body, their views and the decisions that help to shape the school and support our local community. We are a team of students, from all years, who work collaboratively with the Student Leadership Team and, at times, the Senior Leadership Team to improve our school. We understand the importance of the role and how we can help to provide new opportunities and a student voice for every child.
At The Marlborough Science Academy we aim to help young people to have a greater say over matters that affect our school, our school community and our wider lives. Looking at our wider local community is also an important part of role. To date we have worked with HCC on a community environmental campaign and with the Sustainable Schools Trust. We have helped lead a positive mental health conference for secondary schools in St Albans and Harpenden and continue to strive to promote positive mental health within the school. We also work to support local charities raising thousands of pounds each year.
Why is it an important role?
Our role is important because we can offer the views of the student body when decisions are being made that make our school what it is: a happy, safe, learning community where all students endeavour.
The Student Parliament is involved in the interview process of teaching and support staff. We are also encouraged to work towards finding solutions and ways to action the voice of the students. We are encouraged to have an understanding of the decision making processes involved with the successful running of a school in today’s modern and technological world.
What makes our student parliament effective?
We work together as a team to help make our school the very best it can be. Our Student Parliament respects the views of others. Each form is represented by volunteer council members who raise the ideas or concerns of their fellow tutees.
- Scheduled weekly meetings
- Student Leadership Team are involved, where possible, with the meetings
- Weekly minutes published to all students on Google Classroom
- Weekly minutes are shared with the Senior Leadership Team
- A Student Parliament that represents every form
- Good communication between representatives, forms and year groups
- Annual evaluations
- Exceptional legacy of fund raising for nominated charities
- Completely voluntary to ensure every student has a chance to have their say
- 2022/23 we had over 80 members
- Every member wears a Student Parliament badge so they can be recognised by others and always lead by example.
- Initiatives driven by the students
What happens at meetings?
- Our Student Parliament meets weekly. The topics discussed are varied and diverse covering all aspects of school life.
- It is these weekly meetings that drive the half termly foci. Initiatives are varied and range from school uniform, environmental issues, increasing awareness of positive mental health within the school, House events, teaching and learning, and extra-curricular clubs.
- Students work collaboratively on everything from the initial ideas to its completion.
- Students are actively encouraged to participate fully in all initiatives.
- All minutes from the meetings are shared with the Head Teacher and staff.
is the student parliament a democratic process?
- Representatives choose to be part of School Parliament on a voluntary basis and are encouraged to be active in meetings and in discussion had via Google Classroom.
- Whilst the Student Parliament embraces many elements of the democratic process, it is important to remember that all decisions regarding the school need to be agreed upon by Ms Thomson.
- It is up the students to decide the agenda for the meetings and, with the help of Ms Redfern, they organise timescales and future plans. Occasionally, staff ask that the Student Parliament add something specific to their agenda; once discussed, and answers or solutions are suggested, Ms Redfern or the Student Leadership Team and results are passed on to the relevant teacher.
- The Student Leaders Team meet regularly with a member of the Senior Leadership team to share the voice of the students. The results of these SLT discussions are reported back to the full Student Parliament who will then disseminate information to the forms and year groups they represent.
- Any concerns that the students have are raised at School Parliament meetings and all voices are heard. We have some fantastic ideas for the coming year.
What have we achieved?
- An audit to find out where students feel safe in the school and grounds
- School Wifi strengthened
- Increased House events within school
- Consulted when the caterers were being chosen
- Meet with the caterers to share student voice and menu choices
- To date over £10k to local charities
- Represented our school in a Positive Mental Health Conference
- Mental Health Display board
- Helped design ideas for Black History Month
- Students have been involved in designing elements of the Jubilee Garden
- Students have been involved in designing elements of the new buildings
- House Pins for every student
- Sustainability report to SLT
- Kindness and Anti-Bullying displays