Over 100 staff, students, parents and members of the local community came to the hustings for the General Election 2019 to be held on 12th December. Candidates from each political party attended, Alex Burghart (Conservative), Oliver Durose (Labour), Paul Jeater (Green), David Kendall (Liberal Democrats) and Robin Tilbrook (English Democrats) and Mr Barrs, Headteacher chaired the event. Each candidate delivered their manifestos and then the audience were invited to ask questions.
The event gave the school an opportunity to contribute to the Ingatestone community as well as the wider community of the school. Encouraging young people to engage in their democracy is an important feature of an Anglo education and the level of questioning certainly put our candidates on the spot. Questions about our relationship with Europe, formal or otherwise, were taken first. Mr Barrs made history by using the “B” word when referring to the possible British exit from the European Union! Questions about education, mental health and the NHS then followed.
Mr Barrs concluded the meeting by expressing a view that politics is important and is conducted by people who want to make a difference. He went on to say that politics can be divisive but it also needed to be a unifying force .
At least 3 people expressed the view that they had moved from “undecided” to “decided” in terms of how they will vote as a result of attending the hustings. The straw poll at the end indicated a fairly even split between The Conservative Party, the Green Party, the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats. It may not be quite like that on polling day!
A strong tradition in this country is that parents take their children by the hand to the polling station. This certainly reinforces the importance of voting. It is clear, however, that many of our young people think that voting is so important that they might consider taking their parents by the hand on polling day to make sure they vote!Politics students invitation to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Our Upper Sixth Politics students were very fortunate to be invited to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The students were shown around the very impressive George Gilbert Scott building including the grand offices and conference rooms and internal courtyards, highlights included Durbar Court the former heart of the India Office and the Locarno suite of reception rooms. Our hosts, Marie-Claire and Beverley shared some fascinating insights from their careers which have included postings all over the world, highlighting the critical work of the FCO and explaining how the organisation works to improve diversity, relationships with other countries and supports business and enterprise. The students were also informed how to access careers at the FCO and how they could use their language skills in this context. We are very grateful to the staff at the FCO for the time they spent to make this visit so meaningful.
“The FCO was an inspiring visit, it was fascinating to be able to learn about one of the fundamental organs of our country and the ever-changing role they play in international relations- no two days are the same. What truly captured my attention was the mirror challenge- this is where they placed mirrors on the walls with a name plaque underneath with places where women have never been ambassadors, places such as Paris, Tokyo and Washington. The aim of the mirror challenge was to inspire women and girls to try and achieve equality in the FCO.”
The students finished the day with a tour of the Palace of Westminster, which included the chambers of the House of Commons and House of Lords.
Another hugely successful Careers Convention
We held another hugely successful Careers Convention on Thursday 14th November, with 583 students and families attending. At this year’s event we had over 40 contributors from the world of work, training organisations and representatives from Further and Higher Education including Teledyne e2v, Tees Law, Anglia Ruskin Medical School and House & Jackson Pet Clinic. This was a great opportunity for our students to talk to professionals in an informal setting to find out about careers and associated pathways. Students were also invited to attend presentations on the different types of apprenticeships on offer including the new higher and degree apprenticeships and to also hear about the post 16 opportunities Chelmsford College offers.
If you would be interested in participating as an exhibitor next year on Thursday 19th November 2020 we would be delighted to hear from you, please contact