Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Foundation TV have asked us to promote the fact that they are looking for…..



Closing Date:  11th June 2012

Please see the info on the poster below.

To download the pdf poster please click here


OK, school councillors (and link teachers!), this is YOUR chance for YOUR school to take part in a genuine Guinness World Record attempt, along with every other school in the country. The attempt is being organised by the Health Protection Agency (wow!) and School Councils UK jointly.

On Monday October 15th, an official Guinness World Record attempt will take place to set the record for young people at school, all doing the same hand hygiene lesson at the same time. Schools across the UK will be taking part and you are invited to join in, so that you can say that you are a Guinness World Record holder. Yes, you!

 There is no cost to take part. 

Simply ask your teacher to go to to register your school’s interest in being involved and to receive your information pack to tell you how to enter. We will send your teacher the information you need. School councillors should ask the link teacher to register and not do so themselves.

Of course, there’s a serious side to this. We want young people to realise just how important hand hygiene is. Washing your hands is quite simply the best thing you can do to protect yourself against many diseases. 

We’d like you to have the chance to show the world that when young people speak with one voice they should be heard. Already, many schools have signed up. Just think! If you and everyone else takes part, we could have the biggest ever number of young people doing the same thing at the same time. You will show them what a very powerful voice young people have.

 Please help us spread the word by mobile and on Twitter (follow @schoolcouncils and @HPAuk)

 Note to teachers:  there’s a great lesson plan available to back up this exciting and fun event.

click here to download the pdf

We are very pleased and excited to welcome DALTON GRANT as a VIP supporter of School Councils UK.

Dalton Grant is a former Olympic High Jumper who has won four National titles for Great Britain in the high jump event.   Between 1988 and 1991 he set nine sucessive National records, and from there went on to win Gold in the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur.

He was a board director of the London 2012 Olympic bid team and was also captain of the GB & NI Team. 

He inspires and shares his experience and talent with the younger generation.  With his background as an elite athlete he understands pressure and the importance of remaining focussed on your goals.

We are delighted to welcome Dalton, and truly appreciate his support.

Dalton Grant in action!







Working with children at Gospel Oak School









Dalton Grant (centre) receives his certificate as he is inducted in the London Youth Games Hall of Fame (Hackney Gazette)


We have received a message, today, from the British Council, which we hope will be of interest.


Dear All

This is to confirm that we can accept applications from schools for a Foreign Language Assistant ( up to September as we would like to ensure as many schools as possible have the opportunity to participate in this excellent programme and maximise the number of schools having an FLA in the classroom …

If you need reminding why schools need Foreign Language Assistants, watch this short video.

We’re especially keen to have many more applications for Assistants from China and France to make language learning relevant and fun and help prepare young people to live and work in a global economy…

John Rolfe, British Council

Download the Information Leaflet by clicking here

Our mission:  To help children and young people to have a greater say over matters that affect them in their school and wider lives.

The clear truth is: that the environment in which we all live is in a sorry state; that the previous generations have got us into that position; and it will fall to the present generation of young people to get us out of where we are.

In the lifetime of our children, according to the weight of evidence, we are likely to suffer climate change on a previously unknown scale. We are already experiencing the beginnings of changes in the weather. It’s official. The Met Office reports that 2011 was exceptionally windy. In April 2012 we are already in an official drought.  There are all sorts of extraordinary weather events happening globally on an unnerving scale.

We cannot simply bury our heads in the sand ostrich-style and hope that the problems will go away.  We know that we have to reverse the tide, all of us.  We know that the children ought to have a great deal to say on the subject because it is their world that we adults have messed up for them, and it is they who will have to recover the situation.

So as adults, we should show leadership in encouraging a change of culture in ourselves and unlearning old bad habits.  As young people, we should take on the world the adults are going to hand to us, determined to make the necessary changes to make the world a better place when our turn comes to have children of our own. Go Green

School Councils UK needs your articles!


 Calling all School Councils…..Calling all School Councils…..Calling all School Councils

We know that you enjoy receiving our e-newsletters, which is great, because we like writing them!  BUT… they are so much more interesting and relevant when we are able to include articles and pictures or photos sent in by schools.

So, all you budding journalists, please get your thinking caps on!  Write us between 500-750 words telling us about your School Council.  It could be how you elect your reps, what happens in your meetings, or maybe you’ve tried something different or got involved in a new aspect of school life.  Whatever it is, if you are enjoying doing it, then other schools will love to hear about it.

PLUS….. every school that has an article published gets a £50 voucher to spend on our resources.

We look forward to hearing from you!

This morning we have heard that the Government is cutting the Free School Meals programme.

From October 2013, if a family earns more than £7,500 a year, they will lose entitlement to Free School Meals for their children.  That’s £7,500 a year – £625 per month – £144.23 per week.

The ability for Local Councils to provide children from poorer families with a Free School Meal has been in place since 1906.  The system of FSM is so entrenched in our Education system that it is even used as one of the statistics in measuring school achievement.

In a survey carried out by Netmums in February this year, it was found that 70% of families are “on the edge of surviving“.  For many children, their lunch at school is their main meal of the day. The same survey showed that 1 in 5 mums are regularly going without food so that their children can eat.

“Every month we are waiting until the next child benefit just so we can buy food.  This week we are going 5 days with only £10 left to our name…..”

In response to the Netmums survey, the Department of Work and Pensions said:

“Our welfare reforms will have a dynamic impact on some of the poorest families and will lift over one million people out of poverty…..”

A woman running a food parcel scheme has said:

“We give out 35 parcels twice a week.  Mostly they go to mothers who are trying to feed families.  Most have children who are school age so at least they get a meal there…”

What can we do?

The Childrens’ Society have produced a Policy Report on the future of free school meals.  You can read it here.

The Childrens’ Society’s “Fair and Square” Campaign aims to ensure that all children in need of a free school meal, receive one.  Please support this campaign, we do.  We passionately believe in the Health and Wellbeing of Children and Young People, and surely Free School Meals are one sign of a compassionate society.

Please may we ask you to sign the Fair and Square petition by clicking on the logo


The Innovation Unit have asked us to let you know about an exciting new Learning Guide they have just launched.  This is what they say about it…..

New Project-based Learning Guide launched by the Innovation Unit

We’re thrilled to announce the publication of Work That Matters: The Teacher’s Guide to Project-based Learning, which we’ve produced in partnership with San Diego’s High Tech High!

Work That Matters was produced as part of Learning Futures, which we ran in partnership with the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.  You can download Work That Matters here.

Project-based learning is soaring in popularity among teachers and school leaders who want to make school a more engaging place to learn.  We have produced this guide because just ‘doing’ project-based learning isn’t enough – in order to engage students, and ensure that they learn, you need to do it well.

This guide offers step-by-step advice on planning and managing extended, interdisciplinary projects, as well as useful protocols for critique sessions, templates for important documents such as project plans, and examples of high-impact projects.

Sir Ken Robinson calls it ‘an impressive and practical resource to help teachers and students alike transform their approach to learning and achievement.

Professor Tim Brighouse, former chief advisor to London Schools, says it  can help and inspire teachers and school leaders to ‘push the frontiers of what is possible.’

Ron Berger, Chief Programme Officer of Expeditionary Learning andf author of An Ethic of Excellence, calls it ‘an unusually thoughtful and valuable resource for teachers … distinguished by a powerful focus on the integrity and quality of projects.

To find out more about project-based learning, and other ways to make school a more engaging place to learn, we would be delighted to see you at one of our ‘flipped conferences’ in Manchester and London. You can read more about our conferences here.  Also, to join the Engaging Schools community, sign up here (tick the ‘Engaging Schools’ box).

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School Councils UK