The Debate Continues – Merton Children’s Council To Meet With Siobhain McDonagh

Siobhain McDonagh, MP for Mitcham and Morden will be the esteemed guest of The Merton’s Children Council, when they convene at Aragon Extended Primary School on Friday 9 December to discuss and debate a range of topical issues.

A taste of the items to be covered includes local transport, bird flu, terrorism and Merton’s town centres.

One of the key questions to be thrown open to debate is whether or not teachers can teach reading well.

This will be turned on its head by the argument that the majority of Merton’s schoolchildren read exceptionally well.

Each of Merton’s Primary Schools are invited to send along two representatives to these meetings every term, which gives offers children a democratic forum, in which to discuss matters of local and national importance.

The Merton Children’s Council is unique in the sense, that it’s the only Children’s Council in England, whose membership is made up of year 6 pupils.

It allows children to get their thoughts and points across in an educational environment, however it doesn’t stop dead there, as the ideas and concerns that are tabled in the meetings are fed back to Merton’s various council departments for their consideration.

Back in May of this year, The Children’s Council had the prestigious honour of travelling up to City Hall in Central London, where they participated in the Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone’s Question Time, and they even managed to fire a question at the Mayor himself.

Siobhain McDonagh, MP for Mitcham and Morden constituency said:

“Many of the most difficult questions I get, are asked by children.
Whether it is at events like this, other visits I make to local schools
or on trips I arrange for them to Parliament. It never ceases to amaze
me how insightful our young people can be.

The calibre of Mitcham and Morden’s children gives me reason to be
optimistic for the future.’

Merton Council leader, Councillor Andrew Judge added:

“It’s fabulous that Merton’s schoolchildren are involved in democracy at a young age. Being involved in The Children’s Council at this stage of their lives will