North Yorkshire School Children Participate in Academy Trust’s Student Leadership Conference

19 Jul 23

Dozens of children from across North Yorkshire gathered last Friday (14th of July) to take part in The STAR Multi Academy Trust’s inaugural student leadership conference.

Taking place at Sherburn Old Girls’ School Community Centre, the event welcomed representatives from each of the Trust’s nine primary and two secondary schools, who were invited to participate in a series of discussions about their learning experiences and what they could learn from one another about what works well in each school.

All of the children and young people who attended hold student leadership roles within their individual schools and all of them play an active role in putting forward the views and opinions of their fellow pupils.

As part of the event the Trust’s CEO, Ian Yapp, delivered a vote of thanks to the attendees, while several secondary school alumni - including former students who helped to set up Tadcaster Grammar School’s Equality and Diversity Group - also delivered inspirational workshops on the power of student leadership on their journey through and since leaving secondary education.

This included a talk from a former student of Sherburn High School and Kirk Fenton Primary, who is pursuing a career as an Environmental Engineer, following six months playing semi-professional cricket in Australia.

The Trust’s first Student Leadership Conference forms part of its ongoing commitment to create an inclusive environment where every young person has the opportunity to flourish and realise their full potential and follows a recent student survey which was rolled out across all eleven schools earlier this year.

This included feedback from children that they wanted to learn more about the wider STAR community of schools and look at ways in which they could be agents of change.

Cayte Mulhern, STAR MAT’s safeguarding, equalities, inclusion, diversity and wellbeing lead who organised the event, said: “This was an absolutely fantastic afternoon of discussion and activity, which proved incredibly popular with all of the children who attended.

“As a Trust we believe that all the pupils and students within our communities have a right to the same high standard of inclusive education, and we strive to develop leadership at all levels. This conference provided them with the opportunity to put into context the roles they play as leaders and to see what influence they can have as a student body.

“They were also able to share best practice with their peers, and they will now take all of that positive learning back to their individual schools.

“We can’t wait to see what changes that results in moving forward and we’re already looking forward to hosting a second student leadership conference next school year, perhaps looking beyond our school communities and exploring wider local and global issues that concern our children and young people.”