Youngsters shine in political spotlight
PUPILS from 11 schools in Emerald and surrounding regions were presented with a rare opportunity last Friday.
For the first time, children in Emerald and surrounds were given the chance to participate in the 2018 Emerald Youth Parliament and deliver speeches on topics of concern to them.
Youth parliaments provide students with parliamentary experience based on the procedures and processes of the Queensland Parliament.
Year 6 pupil at Emerald Christian College Gonela Ngwira delivered a one- minute speech on flexible education and employment for young people.
Although he learned a great deal about parliament during this experience, Gonela does not think being a politician is for him.
"I think it was just good to know what it's like to be in parliament, what they do and how they do it,” he said.
Year 6 teacher at Emerald Christian College Kathy Clout described the experience as highly beneficial for the children.
"It was a wonderful opportunity,” she said.
"We got a chance to show our speaking skills, which we practise in class, and it gave the kids an experience in parliament.
"We live in a regional area so sometimes these opportunities pass us by, but this is the first time they have come to Emerald and we were super keen to be part of that.
"I've already spoken to the person organising it asking if they could come back sooner than every 3-5 years - every year would be wonderful.”
She said the children were able to talk on topics that were of interest to them.
"Some of the issues that came up were amazing. Particularly being in a regional area, we got to hear some credible ideas.
"I think we have some future politicians on our hands.”