The annual Mayoral Debate for Secondary Schools was held on Wednesday 21 November and saw young people discuss how to tackle loneliness and social isolation.
Teams from six of the Borough’s secondary schools debated the proposition, “loneliness and social isolation is described as being harmful to our physical and emotional health. How and why loneliness can be tackled, and who needs to be involved.”
Each of the team of Key Stage 3 pupils spoke for 10 minutes in the Council Chamber at Bishops’ College, using PowerPoint to illustrate their arguments and, afterwards, were posed a question about their proposition from another competing school.
Their views and suggestions were evaluated by a judging panel comprised of the Mayor of Broxbourne, Cllr Carol Crump, the Leader of Broxbourne Council, Cllr Mark Mills-Bishop, Broxbourne Council’s Community Development Manager, Steve Whitlam, and the Youth Mayor, Chris Bakalis.
After much thought provoking debate, the winning was announced as St. Mary’s High School.
The Mayor of Broxbourne, Cllr Carol Crump, said: “Well done to the winning team – Starr Chaplin, Emiliano Negoita, Emmily Goldson, Emma Smith, Libby Laker-Jones and Luke Mobbs. Their ideas were thoughtful and refreshing. The Council and other partners would do well to consider these. Well done also to all the other participants who researched their projects and the subject in depth, and presented it so well.”
The other teams participating in the debate were from the Broxbourne School, Goffs Academy, Goffs-Churchgate Academy, the John Warner School and the Robert Barclay Academy. Each school came up with innovative ideas to tackle this issue which will be explored further by the Council.
Every participant was awarded a certificate and the winning team received a trophy which was donated by the Mayor.
At the end of the event, participants gathered together to formally launch the nomination process for the 2019 Broxbourne Youth Awards which celebrates the achievements of local young people and those who provide services and support for them. Nominations can be made online at www.broxbourne.gov.uk/youthawards and the closing date is Friday 25 January. The Awards Ceremony will be held at the Spotlight on Friday 29 March.