2021 National Schools Constitutional Convention

National School's Constitutional Convention

The National Schools Constitutional Convention took place on the 24 & 25 March, which would normally see students from all around Australia travelling to Canberra for the two-day event. This year the convention was held across 11 hubs connecting with Canberra, the central hub, via video conferencing.

Across the two days students addressed the question "Should the constitution have a new preamble that would recognise our history, our aspirations and the many peoples and groups that make up our nation?"

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Meet our new Education Advisory Panel members

Faces of Parliament - meet our new Advisory Panel memebrs

Our Education Advisory Panel plays an integral part in informing the work we do to connect teachers and students with the work of Parliament. This year, we are pleased to welcome 3 new panel members: Alison, Amelia and Jack.

Alison brings a wealth of knowledge from her experiences at a brand new school, which has welcomed year 11 students for the first time this year. This has meant that much of Alison’s recent work has been focused on introducing new subjects, developing curriculum and creating a wide range of student support material.

Amelia and Jack are our student representatives. This is a new role on the Advisory Panel, and we are so fortunate to have partnered with the VicSRC to create the opportunity to hear from students directly. Both Amelia and Jack recently attended our first meeting for the year, and it's already clear how much we're all going to benefit from the insights they will bring.

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Research tips for the Parliament Prize 2021

Research tips for the 2021 Parliament Prize

In the lead up to the launch of our annual Parliament Prize competition on 31 May, we've been developing resources to help you make the most of this learning opportunity in your classroom.

Last month we provided some ideas to help students identify a topic for the Parliament Prize. In this edition we've provided some research tips that aim to help students further develop and expand upon their issue or topic of choice.

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Faces of Parliament - Pablo Diaz

Opening the front door of Parliament House

For a group of people who are customer-facing, engaging with the community through screens rather than face-to-face was something that everyone needed to adjust to, especially given what Pablo and the team consider to be the core purpose of their role: connecting people to Parliament.

“It’s the people’s house, there’s a lot of history here. Parliament isn’t just about history though, it's actually a contemporary place in terms of the legislative work that's done here. It is accessible to everybody, it’s beautiful in terms of architecture, and people definitely connect with that aspect, but it’s what’s happening here right now - seeing history being made - that's really exciting.”

In 2020, the team spent six weeks designing online incursions to ensure there were still opportunities for students to learn about the work of Parliament. The resulting program has now connected with more than 200 schools and has proved so popular that it is now offered on an ongoing basis.

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Parliament Prize teacher resource

Parliament Prize teacher resource

The Parliament Prize is back in 2021! Our annual competition invites Victorian school students to consider what they would say in Parliament if they were an MP, and submit a 90-second video of their own Member statement.

Based on feedback from teachers last year, we have created a new resource to support student’s entry into the Parliament Prize. This will assist students to develop their capacity in writing their Member Statement; consider how they might generate ideas so that they can identify relevant state-based issues or topic; and determine how they can produce a well-rounded video presentation.

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