Use your voice: 'In your school'

Key Points

  • Email with your comments and opinions!
  • What would you change about school? What do you like about school?
  • How do you 'use your voice' in your school? Do you have a say in making decisions?

Join the discussion


    Right, it's time to call it a day there on what has been a superb 'Use your voice' debate about life in your school.

    You've built up a fascinating picture about the activities and concerns in schools across the world.

    A particularly big thankyou to the DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines, who have stayed at school very late to take part today. It's been fascinating hearing about how they combat risk in their school and community. World Class would like to thank Plan International for making their participation possible.

    Join us tomorrow for the third debate for International Education Week - in which schools can 'use their voice' and share what they get up to outside school.


    Hannah, Lucy and Nikki from Upton-by-Chester High School write:

    "In our school there is a lot that has improved such as getting a room where people can pray, more councillors and mentors who you can always talk to and get real advice from which is good for our school."


    Colegio Newland in Queretaro, Mexico, have a response for Collegi Sagrada Familia (1118).

    "Here in Newland we have different schedules that depends of the day of the week. We also have several cultural and sports activities in the afternoon."

    Pupils from the Newlands debating team! Pupils from the Newlands debating team!

    Ryan and Emma from William Farr School's executive school council write:

    "At our school we have many different activities to suit everyone, from football teams to variety performance shows. This enables the students to express themselves and feel confident to pursue their ambition in life.

    Peer mentoring is a system in our school where each new year 7 form is assigned a group of year 11's who meet with the year 7's once a week, to help them with problems and give them information about the school. This shows that everyone is willing to help out the younger pupils."

    Thanks Ryan and Emma!


    And some more from Shipra from Apeejay School, Pitampura in India!

    "No doubt our school has perfect infrastructure but the moment we step out of our building, the first thing that catches our gaze is the garbage that gets accumulated near the poor drainage system that flows just besides our institution.

    "We have even complained about this matter a plethora of times to our esteemed Municipal Corporation Department.

    "If I had to talk about what are the loopholes (problems) inside the building, the first thing that strikes my mind would be the image of the parking lot which is located in the back side of our school. The thing that is treacherous is that the honeybees have build up their combs over there, which are quite dangerous for little kids."


    Let's hears more from Gildersome Primary in Leeds, UK!

    Ben writes: "What I like about my school is that we have three play times one in the morning at 10.45am for fifteen minuits one at lunch at 12.00 oclock one hour and one at 2.15pm for fifteen minuits. We also have fruit break in the morning so that's why I like my school."

    Kai writes: "In the UK we don't need to worry about any bad things. Our school is very fair and we get a choice of what we want to do like football, gymnastics, cooking, netball, gardning, rambling, arts and crafts and more. We also look after the little infants."


    LSA Technology and Performing Arts College in Lancashire, UK write about their school - and end with a question for everyone:

    "Our school has been awarded for its extended services and students love our Tuesday after school activities mostly run free of charge but they also believe that there needs to be more facilities for 11-16 year olds when they are not in school especially in the summer!

    "We also think that we have problems in the UK like crime and violence and litter needs tackling. Students believe that they get lots of homework but then again it's all part of the learning right? We would be interested in finding out the levels of homework in other countries."


    The DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines have a response to Vanda (see 1231).

    "What encourages us to carry out this big responsibility is the fact that we're experiencing such disasters brought by calamities."

    They've also sent in this brilliant photo of their debate team with the live page up on a big screen!

    DRR Texter Clan pupils! DRR Texter Clan pupils!

    Sagrada Familia in Spain write in answer to 1210:

    "If we get into trouble there is always a teacher who will help us. We can explain what has happened and we are listened [to].

    The only thing they ask is that we do it correctly."


    We have a late joiner - welcome to Alkawthar Secondary School from the Lebanon!

    "We like the fact that our school appreciates the the opinion of students body. The student body is represented in the school board. Certain rules are obligatory, but we are allowed to discuss with the administration.

    "Yet, we would like to change some like, boys to have the access to the same facilities as girls. We want the amount of homework assignments to be less.

    "We are so proud of our school because they work on developing our skills and abilities."


    Chelsea from Bedford Academy in Bedfordshire, UK writes in answer to Upton-by-Chester [1246]:

    "Each form nominates 2 students to be student voice representatives. They take the decision of the form to a student voice representative meeting and the majority choice is the one which is chosen.

    "Student voice rep is an important position as you are voted for by your peers."


    Right everyone - just letting you know that we are going to run for another 15 minutes!


    Colegio Newland in Mexico have a question for Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School, they ask:

    "Which building are you going to build? and for what?"

    They also have a message for the DRR Texter Clan:

    "We also think that is important to avoid all those things you mentioned. We try to avoid them by dialogue and communication. It's not always successful, but we are always trying."

    Colegio Newland in Mexico Colegio Newland in Mexico

    Take a look at this great photo from St. Stephen's RC Primary School in Longbenton, Newcastle Upon Tyne discussing the pros and cons of moving to a new school:

    Weighing up the pros and cons Weighing up the pros and cons

    Baltasound JHS in Shetland, UK have emailed us about being in a small community:

    "We don't have to wear a uniform because it allows us to express ourselves through our clothes. The teachers teach in a good interesting way - they try avoid reading out boring things. They use power point and things like that. We also get a wide variety of lessons. We think that we get away with quite a lot of things - teachers are not too strict.

    "It's a small school which can be a good thing and a bad thing. Good things are that teachers can work with small groups and individuals. And we all get a chance to be involved in everything like school plays, clubs etc...

    "Bad thing is everyone knows everyone elses business, so rumours spread quite easily."


    Waid Academy in Fife, UK write:

    "We have two breaks each day, at lunch we have the freedom to go where ever we want for food however we also have a cafe in the school.

    We have good learning equipment such as Computers, Smart Boards and projectors. The school also has a cooking department with gas and electric cookers."

    Craig and Danny write:

    "The Waid Academy has good fitness facilities. We have a gym, Swimming Pool, a Sports Hall, 2 Training Pitches and an Astro Turf pitch."


    Beth from Gildersome Primary School in Leeds, UK writes:

    "Our school has been rebuilt recently and all the facilities are new. We have three playtimes one at 10:45am - 11:00 another at 12:00pm - 1:00 and finally one at 2:15.

    "We start school at 8:55 and finish school at 3:30. We also have lots of choice at school we get to choose what we do for a Friday afternoon reward and get to apply for jobs."


    William Farr School in Lincoln, UK write:

    "There are some things that we think should be improved in our school, one of these things is the size of our car park because it is too small and can be dangerous at the end of a school day when there are buses and cars trying to get in and out. A way in which are trying to resolve this problem is by making our car park bigger and make it specifically for pick-ups and drop offs.

    Another problem is that for the current amount of students in our school the school site isn't big enough to accommodate everyone, so we are looking to extend a building in our school, to provide more class rooms."


    Joel from Gildersome Primary School writes:

    "I would like to tell you what I like about my school. Our new classrooms are brilliant and very spacious we also have brilliant new high-tec computers are corridors are fantastically long.

    "We now have a animation studio/Recording studio. Now I want to tell you how much choice we get in school well on friday we have something called Friday actvities!"

    Thanks very much Joel!


    Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School in Taiwan also have an answer to Upton-by-Chester High School's question at 1235.

    "We got two recycling bins in each classroom, one for paper and the other for plastic bottles or materials. We take them to the recycling lot every day."


    The DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines have a response to Upton-by-Chester High School (see 1235):

    "We are also involved in environmental sanitation and protection. One of our activities is to recycle waste material like papers which we used as a project material in school, waste segregation and recycling.

    "We do not only recycle paper but we also conduct regular coastal clean-up and tree growing. We were also trained on how to recycle or transform waste materials into some useful things which we could sell such as door mats made from old clothes, bags from tetra pack, curtains made from candy wrappers among others."

    Fascinating comments there.


    Raouf, Marc, Joana, Aina and Victòria from Sagrada Familia in Spain have a replied to our question of how they make their voices heard in their school, they write:

    "Here in Spain, we do not know of any school where students give ideas to teachers. We are not used to that.

    But we will try to work this idea of the leader of learning with a couple of teachers."


    Josh and James from Upton-by-Chester School have a reply to Bedford Academy's question (1229):

    "There was a large difference in some choices than others the major choice is going to be built first with the smaller ones probably trailing afterwards but hopefully all voices will be heard.

    "The student voice is done by the whole school from our website everybody logged into their own accounts and voted in the poll this made sure it was done fairly and nobody cheated and everybody was heard. Peoples voices were done individually without representatives.

    "And now a question back. Do You have a Representative?"


    Rowan, Sarah, Georgia and Eliza from Upton By Chester High School say: "This is us enjoying the many opportunities to get involved with people around the world!"

    Glad you're enjoying the debate! Glad you're enjoying the debate!

    Chuzzlewit class from Charles Dickens Primary School in London, UK write:

    "We are talking about our school. We are currently debating our after school clubs. Most children agree that we have lots of clubs but some would like more. We are also having a heated debate about the cost of after school clubs!"


    Hello to Elena from Gildersome Primary School in Leeds, UK! She tells us: "In the UK we do not need to worry about hurricans and tsunamis or any other disasters.

    "In our school we have our own choice of what we would like to do such as on Friday afternoon (as part of) the reward sytem we have three choices of what we would like to do such as cooking, arts and crafts, football, rambling, netball, gardening and many more."


    The DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines say: "Hello to Aidans Academy. With regards to your comment (see 1211): 'Is asking a question a part of having a voice?'"

    "Asking a question is part of having a voice because in asking we're able to express the thoughts we have in mind."


    James and Josh from Upton By Chester High School have are in a similar situation to St. Stephen's RC Primary School (1159):

    "We had a similar situation in our old primary school Thomas Wedge, it had been part of Saughall history for 200 years and was built by Thomas Wedge who was an important person in our village's history.

    "Most of the school was demolished to make way for a bigger more high tech school but because the village didn't want to lose so much history everybody pulled together to keep the school in the end the oldest and the most historic part of the school has been saved and is currently being worked on to be turned into a Childs nursery."


    A big World Class welcome to Baltasound JHS in Shetland, UK! Ryan, Alfred, Joe and Michael write:

    "An issue that affects us in the school is the fact that our school might close because of council cuts. We are safe just now but we don't know what will happen in the future.

    This means we would have to travel everyday by ferry to school. It takes a long time - we'll have to get up earlier."


    Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School in Taiwan have a response to Bedford Academy (see 1148):

    "It's really a good idea to have a space for students of different religions. It is unusual in Taiwan, but in our school, we do have pavilions for students to take a rest or meditate.

    "We also have a question for you. Who offers you free breakfast? In Taiwan we have healthy school lunch which costs less than one pound."

    And they also have a response to Collegi Sagrada Familia (1118)!

    "Students in Taiwan stay in the same classroom most of the time. But about some special subjects, like biology and chemistry, we go to the lab and we also have an art classroom and a music classroom."

    The Kaohsiung debating team! The Kaohsiung debating team!

    Simon and Matthey from Upton By Chester High School in Chester, UK have a question for everyone:

    "We were wondering how your schools recycle? We have a system where every classroom has a green bag and they are emptied regularly.

    Our Eco-Schools Action Team set this up and we are gradually making everyone have the right frame of mind."


    LATEST UPDATE: If you're just joining us, pupils around the world are discussing life in their school for the International Education Week 'Use your voice' debate.

    It's been a fascinating debate so far, and with half an hour to go, there's still time to have your say!

    Pupils have been voicing opinions on a huge variety of school issues, from health and safety, to school food, and decision-making.

    Take a look at what schools have been talking about below, and email your own thoughts to


    William Farr School in Lincoln, England write:

    "At our school we have an open evening once a year where everyone in the school works together to promote our school at its best, from drama performances to science demonstrations. This gives children from other schools a chance to experience what the William Farr school environment is like.

    "We have a school council where the pupils voices can be heard, this year from student suggestions we have improved our sixth form study room and also we have got new sun shades outside our canteen."


    Chuzzlewit class in Charles Dickens School in London, UK, have a comment about 'using your voice' in school:

    "We use our school council to get other people's opinions on the school and to make our school better."


    Some contrasting comments here from pupils on opposite sides of the world...

    Vanda from Bedford Academy in Bedfordshire, UK, says: "Having read the messages from students around the world it surprised me how much they take responsibility for huge issues such as disaster prevention! Our student voice does'nt have to deal with such difficult problems!"

    And the DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines who highlight issues of risk in their school, tell us:

    "How we wish we were just facing the same problems of what other schools from other countries are experiencing because the problems that our school is facing (impacts on) the safety of the students."

    DRR Texter Clan pupils help clean their school grounds DRR Texter Clan pupils help clean their school grounds

    Shipra from Apeejay School in Pitampura writes:

    "Apeejay School, is one of the best school in Delhi and bags third rank in "Top schools of Delhi". Be it the infrastructure or the faculty, our school is complete in all aspects. It's not just complete but even excels in every field. From a sports field to library or a chemistry lab to computer lab, our institution has perfect academia for pupils to excel in their lives."


    And Bedford Academy pupils have a response to James and Josh at Upton-by-Chester (see 1152).

    Jordan asks: "How did the survey end up? Were student choices listened to?"

    George adds: "How did students feel if their choice was not selected? Is student voice done by the whole school or by student representatives? If it's a representative how do you know they share the same opinions as the whole school?"


    St. Stephen's RC Primary School in Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK have written about how they use their voice in school:

    "We have a school council ran by our Deputy Head and Nursery teacher. Our school council consists of 2 councillors elected fairly from each class by their classmates.

    Year 4's councilors Faye and Ellie go to these meetings with a list of things that they want to bring up and discuss as the other pupils in their class have mentioned they would like to see improved or added e.g. at a recent school council meeting the children all agreed that they would like more after school clubs.

    As a result of this meeting, our school are setting up a new Art Club and an ICT club also!"

    Great work from the school council there! Thanks guys!


    Josh and James from Upton High School have a question for Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School (see 1158)! They ask: "Is there an option to bring meals from home?"

    And Simon and Matthew have a question for all schools out there. "We were wondering how your schools recycle paper? We have a system where every classroom has a green bag and they are emptied regularly.

    "Our Eco-Schools Action Team set this up and we are gradually making everyone have the right frame of mind."


    The Chuzzlewit class at Charles Dickens Primary School in London, UK have been discussing safety in their school, they write:

    "Fire safety - we have regular fire drills so we are ready in case of emergency.

    "Road safety - that a few years ago, our school campaigned to have a road closed in order for us to have a larger playground. This was successful. Also, in recent months, another road next to our school has been closed, making it a lot safer for us. We learn about road safety in school.

    "Safety online - we learn about e safety in our school. We learn about how to stay safe online and how to use the Internet properly."


    The DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines, who highlight issues of risk in their school, ask: "What is the so called 'voice in school?"

    "For us it is the freedom to make use of our right to speak out our thoughts, views, opinions and ideas toward a certain school issue.

    "We were able to voice out our opinions or perception on how the school administration run our school. A very good example is we were able to convince the principal to let the students use the computers donated by the Department of Trade and Industry despite her hesitation."

    To illustrate some of the risks they face in school, they've sent us this remarkable photo of their school during rainy season:

    Rainy season in the Philippines Rainy season in the Philippines

    Hello and welcome to St Joseph's Primary School in Harrow, UK! The three main ways they make their voices heard in school are:

    "School council captains collect class ideas and give them to our head teacher.

    "We have surveys and forums on our school website to hear our opinions

    "Each class has a leader of learning who gives ideas to teachers to make our learning better."

    Thanks very much St Joseph's! How do you make your voice heard in your school?


    Hello to West Bretton Primary School pupils in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, who have just been discussing life in their school!

    "Our children are clearly very happy here and feel safe," they say, "but some things they would like to change are:

    "Having the choice between juice or water at lunch time - some people would drink more and feel hydrated if they could have juice too.

    "Having a mini snack bar at morning break so they are more focused in lessons as they get hungry - it was also suggested that the money raised could be used for school resources.

    "And children would like more toilet cubicles as they think they waste time queuing for the toilets before going on educational visits etc."

    Thanks very much for those comments! Do West Bretton Primary pupils have a voice in school?


    Sarah, Rowan, Georgia and Eliza from Upton-by-Chester High School in Chester, UK write:

    "We like having uniform because no one feels different and everyone fits in, we think there should be more resources so that students can use technology to learn with, like iPads."


    Collegi Sagrada Familia have a response to their partner school Shawlands (see 1154), whose international linking activities were featured by BBC Radio Scotland this morning!

    "Hi Guy and all the others at Shawlands! Thanks a lot for your words. We have listened to the radio programme.

    "When we visited Shawlands we realised that you paid a lot of attention to these small details. We learned a lot. We liked the way you work in groups and we are trying to do that here.

    "Small things are changing here little by little. We look forward to keep in touch and work together again."

    The Sagrada debating team! The Sagrada debating team!

    St. Aidan's school in Sunderland, UK write:

    "One of our main problems is having inadequate sports facilities compared with other schools in the area. We often have to go out of school to do PE or games lessons and we wish that we could have much better facilities here.

    "Some of us think that becoming an academy will help us to get this. We have a good reputation for sports, but really out of date facilities.

    "What we want to know is why other schools have things like football pitches, (all weather 3G), swimming facilities, up-to-date sports halls, athletics facilities and track, and pitches that don't flood all the time, when other local schools don't have these things."

    Interesting questions from St Aidan's pupils. World Class wants to know if you tried to find out the answers? What happened? Is asking questions part of having a voice?


    Greetings to Ximena, Saraí, Pablo and Sergio from Colegio Newland in Queretaro, Mexico, who tell us: "We think this is a great school and we like to study here, because our voice is always listened to - not only in class, but if we get in trouble, we can explain and reflect about it.

    "The teachers encourage us to find the answers by ourselves, instead of just giving it to us. Philosophy for Children is a main thing here and we think this gives us the ability to grow an argument and defend our opinions."

    Really interesting comments - especially about school discipline. What happens in your school if you get in trouble? Do pupils still have a voice?


    Caprice and Kiera at Upton By Chester High School add their thoughts to the conversation about using your voice at school (see 1152):

    "In our school we did a survey on what to spend money on. Lots of students got involved and the school took action on our decisions.

    "Now we have brand new chairs to sit on!"


    The DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines, who highlight issues of risk in their school, say:

    "With the use of our voice as students we would like to change two certain things.

    "We would like to change the risk or the effect of the disaster in our school.

    "We'd like to change the negative thing such as bullying, exploitation, abuse and discrimination that affects the learning and in general aspects of the student that hinders their total development."

    The 'Junior Emergency Response Team' is made up of pupils who have been trained in first aid The 'Junior Emergency Response Team' is made up of pupils who have been trained in first aid

    A big World Class welcome to Waid Academy in Fife, UK who have sent in some comments and a picture of their school!

    Jamie writes: "The Waid is good because you get some good teachers who have a laugh and let you relax in class, but then you get some teachers who are always moody and get you into trouble for no reason, but all in all Waid is a good secondary school."

    Waid Academy in Fife, UK Waid Academy in Fife, UK

    Upton-by-Chester High School on twitter: "Pupils busy debating today's topic "In your school" and getting ready to comment! #worldclassdebate"

    Upton-by-Chester pupils debating the issues Upton-by-Chester pupils debating the issues

    And hello to Year 5 pupils at St Stephens RC Primary School in Longbenton, UK.

    "We have had a very lively discussion about what we enjoy about our school," they tell us. "Anna has said that the lessons at St Stephens are educational, but have a strong sense of fun and humour.

    "Sandra said that she enjoys the extra-curricular activities at St Stephens. We have street dancing, a cub pack, football and music clubs. Another helpful group is the school council, who represent pupils and tell the teachers what they would like in school.

    "In the future, the pupils were very vocal about better PE and game facities in the school and for the playground."

    Thanks very much for those thoughts! Do you have a school countil like St Stephens? Do you think it's a good idea?


    Let's hear more from St. Stephen's RC Primary School in Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK! They write:

    "Our school is due to move into a new school building in just under 2 years that we will be sharing with a different school. We have been discussing some of the pros and cons to this move:

    "Pros: We will be able to make lots of new friends and have a new playground with a much larger space and new equipment. We will be moving to bigger classrooms with new facilities.

    "Cons: All of the history of our current school building will disappear and there will be new routines to get used to e.g. school times and our journey to school.

    "Overall we are very excited about the move to our new school building."


    Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School in Taiwan tell us: "Grade 8 students go camping in November. Before that, our teacher will give us a chance to practice cooking on campus.

    "But we don't have a student kitchen. It's not convenient at all. Some of our school buildings are under construction now, and this means we are going to have new building in one or two years.

    "In Taiwan, we have school lunch together at noon, but we can not choose what we want. That means we get what's offered. We usually have Chinese meals, but sometimes we have Japanese meals or spaghetti, and we even have a vegetarian meal once a month."

    A great pic from Kaohsiung showing some of their school lunch options! Kaohsiung pupils show some school lunch options!

    The DRR Texter Clan from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines, who highlight issues of risk in their school, tell us that, "One room in our school has been destroyed because it is located near a mountain

    "The water from the mountains runs directly to the room.

    "Other schools get involved since some students from other schools are also a member of the Disaster Risk Reduction texter clan, who are aware and have the knowledge of school safety."

    And they have a question: "Do other schools have the same problems as us?"


    Shawlands Academy in Glasgow, UK have just spoken on BBC Radio Scotland about their involvement in International Education Week. So a big Hello to them and one of their partner schools Sagrada Familia in Spain who are currently online!

    Shawlands Academy is the largest international school in Scotland and we have some comments about IEW week from them.

    Guy said: "Sagrada Familia pupils came over to our school 2 weeks ago and went to classes with us - they were suprised by how big our school is! We watched a film together which made me realise how small acts of kindness can help others around the world."


    James and Josh at Upton-by-Chester High School have responded to Bedford Academy's comments at 1136.

    "At the start of the year our school pupils had to complete a survey about what we wanted to happen to our tennis courts - there is going to be a community sports centre built there and we got a say in what major sports will be done."

    Anyone else got anything similar to add? Or perhaps an occasion when pupils weren't consulted?


    Let's hear more from Bedford Academy in Bedfordshire, UK, in their brand-new school buildings.

    Alom wrote about planning the new building. He says, "When I arrived at Bedford Academy I asked for a prayer room so that I could pray at lunchtimes or after school. This is really important to me and some of my friends. We now have a multi faith room which we can use".

    Bedford Academy's new digs! Bedford Academy's new digs!

    Also online today are secondary school students from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines, who are part of the DRR Texter Clan - a group spreading awareness of risk in their school.

    They've sent in this great pic of DRR child leaders explaining basic concepts of Disaster Risk Management to other pupils.

    Explaining risk to fellow pupils Explaining risk to fellow pupils

    If you are just joining us: pupils around the world are discussing life in their schools, in the second BBC World Class 'Use your voice' debate for International Education Week.

    So far, schools have talked about a range of issues, with safety in school being a key topic. Students have also been discussing whether or not they have a voice in school.

    What do you think? Do you have a say how your school works? What would you change about school? Email with your thoughts.


    More now from Bedford Academy in Bedfordshire, UK! At 1121 they told us they have a new building. But there's more:

    Mudrik writes, "We actually had a say in what our new building would look like. Our student voices were able to work with the builders on things like what the sixth form area should look like, seating and work areas. It's nice to see that some of our ideas are actually in our new school!"

    Do you have a say in your school?


    The secondary school students from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines who make up the DRR Texter Clan have mailed us to tell us about some of the things that threaten their school life.

    "(There is) the risk of flooding, landslides, falling coconuts and earthquakes.

    "We have conducted symposiums and drills in order for the students to be prepared in times of calamities."

    Big responsibility for the DRR Texter Clan. Do pupils in other schools get involved in school safety?


    Hello to St. Stephen's RC Primary School in Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK who have been discussing their school this morning.

    Mr Kelly the class teacher writes: "One of the most pleasing aspects of the conversation was that all of the children in our class feel safe when they are in school.

    "Emily said that she knew she could trust her teachers to make sure she was safe and Jodie said she always feels safe whenever she is surrounded by her friends all day."


    "Hello all from St. Aidan's Catholic School in Sunderland, UK", begins the latest email to hit the World Class inbox.

    Hello to you! They've been thinking about our debate point (above) about 'using your voice' in school.

    "In our school, 'student voice' is a small number of students who are heard. These students are listened to but there is a feeling that not everyone else is consulted.

    "It is up to 'student voice' to consult their peers, but this isn't really happening yet. We feel that we should be consulted about areas for improvement more often.

    "We are possibly going to become an academy soon and some of us think that this will improve things (but not all of us)."

    Interesting comments there - do any of the other schools online have student groups or councils in your schools?


    Also online this morning are Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School in Taiwan - hello to them!

    They've sent in photos of their school buildings for other pupils to see:

    A great pic of Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School A great pic of Kaohsiung Municipal Wufu Junior High School during exercises

    We'll be hearing more from them shortly about school life in Taiwan!


    A warm welcome to Bedford Academy in Bedfordshire, UK - this is a timely debate for them, as they have just moved into a new school building!

    Vanda from Year 9 says: "We are lucky that we have just moved into a brand new school with amazing facilities. It gives us the chance to really make the most of our time at school and get the best grades we can."

    Chelsea in Year 10 adds: "I like the fact that at our school we get a free breakfast provided every morning in our break."


    Hello to Collegi Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Spain, who have sent us three things they would like to change about school!

    • We think it would be better to finish school by three o'clock, as this would give us freedom to do other activities in the afternoon.
    • We would like each subject to have a specific room with the necessary equipment to do it comfortably. Here we stay in the same room all day and teachers go from one class to another.
    • We would like to have more diversity in the subjects we have to choose. We would be better prepared in our future.

    Interesting point about staying in the same room. Is this the experience of other schools out there?

    A great pic from Sagrada Familia, showing their amazing view over the Mediterranean Sea! A great pic from Sagrada Familia, showing their amazing view over the Mediterranean Sea!

    Hello and welcome to LSA Technology and Performing Arts College in Lancashire, UK!

    They write: "We have issues about speed limits around our school and the school council are working to reduce this limit but some students believe that it would cause even more congestion while others think it's a safer way to cross the road."


    The secondary school students from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines who make up the DRR Texter Clan have this to say:

    "We, the Disaster Risk Reduction Texter Clan believe that our voice should be heard in school and take into consideration and respected - especially on issues related to Disaster Risk Reduction that affect us.

    "It is our right as what is stated in Article no.12 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child - children have the right to give and express our opinions and for adults to listen and take it seriously.

    "We, as concerned students, should be involved in the campaign for enjoying the rights of children to express our opinions. Disaster related issues nowadays should be prioritized because it greatly affects the students' education."

    DRR Texter Clan DRR Texter Clan, Eastern Samar, Philippines

    A warm World Class welcome to Khaitan Public School in Sahibabad, India! They've shared what they think is great about their school!

    Harsh writes: "We have good discipline on our school campus where English speaking skills are taught to all providing a lot of opportunities to everyone."

    Aurinima writes: "I like that our school provides 2 breaks to the pupils one is for breakfast and the other is a fruit break in the afternoon around 12.55pm."

    What do you like about your school?


    We are honoured today to be joined by the DRR Texter Clan - made up of secondary school students from the Eastern Samar province in the Philippines!

    Mark, Sanjoe, Angel, Charidel, Jude and Warlene are all online today, ready to talk about their role in 'Disaster Risk Reduction' in their school.

    Using mobile phones, they are part of a network of pupils who text each other to share information about potential risk issues in their school and community.

    If you have a question you'd like to ask them about what they do, just email!


    Let's kick things off with a meaty email from Chen, who attends Wesley Girls' High School in Taipei, Taiwan!

    She says: "Our school is a Christian school and all of the pupils have to stay in the school dormitory, we can only go home on Wednesdays and weekends.

    "There are three things in school life I'd like to change. First of all, I wish that I didn't have to go to another school for our swimming lesson - we wouldn't have to waste time on traffic.

    "Secondly, I think we have our flag-rising ceremony too often. We do it three times a week. When it lasts a long period in (hot) weather, some students might faint because they can't stand the heat.

    "Last but not least, I wish the score grading could be mostly on the reports students make or the discussion in class. Tests make students think that a high test score is the only reason for learning."

    Interesting thoughts from Chen there - do you identify with any of these? Do any of you have similar thoughts about school?


    A warm World Class welcome to you all!

    It's time to kick off the second International Education Week debate - and today's global conversation is about life in your school.

    We're looking forward to hearing the three things about your school. Maybe something you would like to change? Or something that you really like? And we want to know whether pupils in your school take part in making decisions, or if that's left to the teachers. How do you 'use your voice' in your school?


    Hello everyone! We're just half an hour away from our second debate for International Education Week - and today, we'll be inviting pupils around the world to discuss issues 'in your school'.

    If you're unfamiliar with live debates, it's easy to take part - all you need are some students and an internet connection. Full details on getting started are below.

    And don't forget that you can listen to BBC Radio Scotland live over the next few hours. MacAulay & Co will be broadcasting updates from Shawlands Academy in Glasgow, Scotland, who will be talking about their international education work and school partnerships with Spain, Poland and Bosnia.

    See you in half an hour!


    DEBATE TIME: Tuesday 13 November, 1100-1300

    In our second International Education Week debate, use your voice about life in your school.

    What do pupils think is great about the school? What's not so great? We want to know.

    You can have your say about any aspect of school life - it's up to you.

    How it works

    In class, watch the videos on the right to get you thinking about the issues that affect where you live.

    You can also use the assembly packs (tabbed at head of page) to generate discussion.

    Talk about them in class and come up with three things in school life you'd like to share with pupils around the world.

    Come back to this page at any time between 1100-1300 GMT on Tuesday 13 November to share and discuss your ideas by emailing

    Some helpful tips are available in our teacher's guide to live debates.


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