Friday, 4 December 2009

Green Party Visit Maidenhead School


"Back in October, an enterprising pupil at a school in Maidenhead emailed Caroline Lucas and asked her to come to his school to address the pupils on green issues during an assembly. Caroline was unavailable for several months, so the request filtered down to local activists in Berkshire, and as no-one else was available, I decided that I couldn't leave these children uninformed about vital green issues. After all, they are the future. This was in spite of me never having addressed a group of children in my life.

So after many emails, I turned up at the school bright and early on Thursday 26th November, accompanied by Adrian for moral support. Things started off badly, with the school office closed and no-one seeming to know anything about our visit. But then two girls arrived to escort us to the assembly hall, and when we arrived we met two teachers, including the deputy head, who were expecting us. We only met the pupil who had invited us a few minutes before I started talking. He is a Green Party supporter.

I spoke about one issue only - global warming - and I steered anyway from any overtly political stuff. I had been asked to talk for about 15 minutes. I had my talk on paper, because I didn't have the confidence to talk off the cuff. I covered what it is, why it's happening, what we can do about it, what governments should do about it, why there are deniers and how to counteract them.

The 250 pupils aged mainly between 13 and 15, with a few sixth-formers, listened attentively. I had hoped to take a few questions, but we ran out of time. The deputy head told the pupils they would have the opportunity to discuss what I had said in the school council and any questions would be fed back to me.

Then it was all over - phew! I was relieved, with a real sense of achievement. I received the following email that evening:
"I'd just like to thank you again for coming into my school today, and let you know that numerous peers of mine came to me for the rest of the day to tell me how interesting your talk was. I'm sure you've not only encouraged many people to look to the Green Party for answers to the problems we're faced with, but also to what they can do."

So it looks like I've done some good!"

Guest Post from Marjory Bisset, Green Party Candidate from Wokingham

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