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College Political Party's Landslide Victory

September 10, 2014 at 3:16 PM

It was a close race, but the clear winner of the Year 8 & 9 election campaign this term was the ‘Benefits’ political party, claiming a landslide victory of a fifth of the overall vote. The political party programme was a part of the Special Interest Module (SIM) for the Year 8 & 9 English classes that saw them creating election parties and running their own election campaign over five weeks.

To gain momentum and a following from their peers, the students devised their own policies, billboards, web and Facebook pages, slogan, logo and a whole range of other campaign material before voting was counted last week. The winner was then announced by Head of Middle School, Mr Duncan McQueen in this week’s Middle School assembly delighting the 25-strong student party.

To award the inaugural SIM shield to the students, local Pakuranga MP, Maurice Williamson was invited to attend a morning presentation along with invited guests Head of College, Mr Steve Cole and Mr McQueen. ‘Benefits’ party leader, Year 9 student, Ben Staite led key members of the group as they gave the audience an overview of their student policies and examples of their video and poster material - which certainly included an entertaining bent!

Ben said he learned there were two things it took to win, ‘publicity and hard work’, and that he has taken away a lot from the experience, including enhancing his leadership skills and working within politics in collaboration. Other members of the group said they have now gained an inside view of political parties and how they are set up.

As he awarded the shield to the team, Maurice Williamson gave credit to the young students for getting in and participating. He explained that while politics might look boring now, it does make a difference. ‘Everything about your life now, and in the future will be determined by policy settings,’ he stressed.

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