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Pupil Voice

The importance of pupil voice is strong in Merthyr Tydfil.

All schools have a system in place to develop pupil leadership. These range of a School Council to a school Senedd or Parliament. Senedd committees include things like digital leaders, Eco Warriors, Wellbeing Warriors, to name but a few!

There is strong participation of young people in the wide range of youth services and support services offered. The Youth team offer work taster programmes, resilience programmes and young person led projects which include Georgetown B&G Club fashion project, Treharris B&G Club Heritage project, the Merthyr Tydfil Borough Wide Forum’s (MTBWYF) organisation of the annual Academy of Success. 

The local authority provides young people with the very strong opportunities to have their voice heard through the Merthyr Tydfil Borough Wide Youth Forum (MTBWYF), along with facilitation for the office of Youth and Deputy Youth Mayor.

This approach has enabled young people to engage in the decision-making process, speak independently and challenge the local authority and has been recognised as good practice in the Bronze Quality Mark for Youth Work Assessment in November 2021 and the LA Estyn inspection in January 2022.

The Youth Mayor and Deputy Youth Mayor co-chair the strategic partnership board for the Big Lottery funded Snakes n Ladders project and several young people from the Youth Cabinet are members of the Youth Advisory Panel. This provides young people with a direct voice and influence in the development and shaping of the project as it moves into the delivery phase. 

Schools Student Conference

The Annual Schools Student Conference provides young people with the opportunity to learn, develop and collaborate with other children and young people from across the Borough on ‘hot topics’.

Merthyr Tydfil pupils better-informed on ‘life issues’ as result of annual conference | Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council

The environment and climate change were key themes during 2022-23 and young people developed a young person’s consultation on these topics which was rolled out in the School Conference in July 2022.  The results of the consultation have been incorporated into Merthyr Tydfil School’s Climate Charter that has been developed by the Learning Department. This Charter was developed with children and young people from across Merthyr Tydfil Schools and launched at Coed Y Dderwen Primary School.

The Merthyr Tydfil Schools Climate Charter

Young people of Merthyr Tydfil proudly launch Climate Charter: 10 promises to help our planet | Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council

The Student Conference also plays host to discussions for safeguarding. The children and young people also developed and launched an animation to inform their peers on ‘What is safeguarding’ and ‘how to report’. These events also give students the opportunity to attend interactive workshops with a range of organisations such as South Wales Police, Barnardos, South Wales Fire & Rescue, Youth Service, Street Games, Crime Stoppers and more all delivering key safeguarding messages. Feedback from the event was positive from both teachers and participant.

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