Wembley schoolchildren debate the EU referendum at the House of Commons
PUBLISHED: 17:17 31 May 2016 | UPDATED: 17:17 31 May 2016
Five children from a primary school in Wembley headed to the House of Commons to take part in a debate and Q&A session on the EU referendum.
Rafi Weston, Avi Landau, Chananya Goldmeier, Shira Rees and Sara Solomon, from Naom Primary School in Forty Avenue, headed to Speakers House after they were chosen along with many schools to participate by organisers First News, a children’s newspaper.
Rafi, 11, a yeard 6 pupils, was one of eight children selected to participate in a panel debate, which was chaired by John Bercow MP, the speaker of the House of Commons.
Each of the panellists delivered a short speech representing the different sides of the debate after watching videos of Boris Johnson and Yvette Cooper setting out their arguments for and against remaining in the EU.
The Q&A session brought about lively debate with 10-year-old Shira, drawing applause from the audience.
Rafi, whose ‘remain’ speech focussed on issues relating to migration and security, said: “I was quite nervous before the debate started but it was exciting to be at the Houses of Parliament and to meet so many other children, so my nerves soon disappeared. We have been learning about the EU referendum at school and so I had lots to talk about.”
Sarah Simmonds, head teacher of Noam, said: “I am incredibly proud of all the children. They were a real credit to the school and community. We were awarded the Mayor of London’s Gold Club Award this year and being invited to take part in today’s event has been the icing on the cake.”
Nicky Cox MBE, First News Editor, said: “Children are 27 per cent of the population but 100 per cent of the future. They will have to live with the result of the EU referendum so they needed a chance to make their voices heard.
“The debate shows how keen children are to be involved in the big issues and that they have important views and opinions which should be heard.”