Student Council Share Their Voices

Representatives from the Student Council projected the wider student voice at the latest School Council meeting through discussion, question raising and making proposals:

At Helsby High School, our aims of valuing others and achieving success are at the forefront of our school community. In order for these aims to be achieved, hearing and reacting to our student voice is exceptionally important. This morning, representatives from year groups 9 and 10 student council congregated in the library for an agenda full meeting, joined by HHS governors Kirsty Lowe and Robert Allerston. The meeting allowed for students from both years to express their views, raise questions and suggest ideas on the topics of attendance, uniform, enrichment, HHS charity fund, student acceptable use policy, and the HHS character profile.

The meeting led by Mrs Cross, Personal Development Lead, interactively engaged students to discuss questions posed with one another and feedback to the wider group, encouraging all students to both record their thoughts verbally and write them down.  During the meeting, a plethora of useful and interesting ideas were shared by students, and Mrs Cross expressed that she: “looks forward to feeding back all suggestions and queries to Mr Hill, Senior Leaders and School Governors” in due course.

Attendance and Punctuality Student Survey

Mrs Cross opened the student council meeting by expressing the significance of their input in decision making, stating: “it is essential that we get your views. We don’t want to make changes that affect our students without your consultation, where possible.” This sparked the discussion which followed among students, who expressed their feelings and thoughts regarding student attendance, with students highlighting their understanding of being both present and punctual to school. One year 10 student noted: “So, the more you go to class, the better your grades will be,” with another adding “I think punctuality is just as important as attending the lesson, as showing up late can disrupt teaching”. HHS are proud of the great attitude to learning our students continue to display, and aim to reinforce and support outstanding student attendance and punctuality through recognition and reward, and assistance and guidance when required. Recognition and praise for high attendance levels is prominent within HHS, with students aware and fulfilled by the procedures and reward schemes in place when recognising this. One student claimed: “I prefer a certificate for good attendance more than free money”. Students discussed the rewards on offer now and particularly liked the Amazon vouchers and the early break and lunch passes.

Student Voice on HHS Character Profile

Mrs Cross also asked the students to select, from a lengthy list of pre collated characteristics, the ones that they believed made for an exemplary HHS member. An overwhelming number of students from those asked, highlighted that presenting as  ‘happy’ is a key characteristic to display when aiming to portray yourself as a model student or member of staff. One student claimed: “Being happy and showing you’re happy in school is number one for me because when being happy, all the other characteristics will follow”. This view was supported from fellow students, with almost all of the participating students voting happy as being one of their top 5 desirable characteristics. One student quoted: “A happy school is a calm school”.

Student Survey on School Enrichment

Next on the discussion agenda was enrichment, students were asked to express their views surrounding current enrichment opportunities, and suggest new ideas for further enrichment opportunities. Students proved knowledgeable about present enrichment opportunities, noting a myriad of extracurricular opportunities currently offered. Mrs Cross assured students that all suggestions raised in the meeting for new opportunities will be considered further, noting “there are some really interesting suggestions being made, please all also write them down on your sheets so none are forgotten”.

School Charity Fund Discussion

To conclude the agenda discussions for this meeting, students had a surprise visit from Mr Wheeler, HHS’s very own running hero, who expressed his passion for charity fundraising and his selfless reasons behind his 5k lunchtime runs for charity, which some members of the council recalled supporting and cheering him on at. The students put forward various charities close to their own hearts, in addition to the HHS community, including suggestions from one table of: “mental health charities”. The school charity fund is an excellent way to give back to the wider HHS community, which is why selecting the charities closest to our school community is paramount.

The meeting adjourned with a game of ‘copy me,’ where students stretched their legs and showed their smiles copying actions by Mrs Cross of stand up, sit down, touch the sky, and touch your head.

School Council meeting students raising their hands