Baroness Byford has paid a visit to The Nottingham Emmanuel School and has shared some insights into life at Parliament with students there.
Assistant Principal at The Nottingham Emmanuel School, Sarah Anderson, said the students felt privileged to be given the opportunity to ask questions one on one. “Baroness Byford gave a very interesting talk to a group of students in Years 7 to 13 about life in the House of Lords. She explained how the Chamber is organised and operates on a daily basis and how members work to question, challenge and deepen their knowledge around the laws that are tabled. The students asked Baroness Byford some pertinent questions ranging from topics like Brexit, her work with Agriculture, how it feels to be a woman in the House of Lords and what she perceives to be the most challenging issues for young people at this time.”
Baroness Byford, is a serving Conservative member of the House of Lords and also served as Opposition Parliamentary Spokesman for Food, Farming and Rural Affairs from 1997-2007. She said she had enjoyed interacting with the students and discussing Parliamentary process. “The students’ questions were wonderful today and very diverse. This school is an amazing place, with a wonderful ethos and well worth a visit!” During the discussion Baroness Byford was questioned by a student who is currently serving as a Member of the Youth Parliament (MYP). “It’s great to meet students who are already engaged in politics like Sami, already an elected Youth Parliament member here at Emmanuel. Youth Parliament members’ access to Westminster will vastly increase their experience and knowledge, and even dispel one or two myths. In fact, I think its vitally important that more of us visit schools to show the work that is carried out in the House of Lords.”
Year 12 student, Sami Ayoub (MYP), said he enjoyed the opportunity to learn more about the workings of Parliament, and to ask questions of such an experienced Peer. “It was really interesting meeting her and I feel quite privileged to have been able to ask my own questions. Listening to her answers has been really beneficial for me and a good experience.” For many, the talk stimulated political interest and one student, Dylan Turner has since shown a desire to become a member of the Youth Parliament, joining Sami who has been a member of for three years.
Assistant Principal, Sarah Anderson said political engagement at the school is good, “We are very pleased that students at Emmanuel are becoming interested in politics and in issues which affect their local communities and it is leading to growing numbers attending our own Citizens group on a Thursday lunchtime to discuss matters that are important to them.”
Photograph left to right: Dylan Turner, Connor Ford, Baroness Byford, Ben Lunn, Alyssa Salton and Sarah Anderson, Assistant Principal of The Nottingham Emmanuel School.