Published on March 23 2017. News

Students practice public speaking

Members of Rye College Debating Society, aged 15-16, took over the council chamber at Rye Town Hall on Tuesday afternoon, March 21.

Damian Cosgrove takes the chair

They were there to learn about civic engagement, how to draft an agenda, elect a chairman and engage in public speaking. Joining them around the table were Mayor Jonathan Breeds, Town Clerk Richard Farhall and Louise Payne, humanities teacher at the college, as well as Cllrs Rebekah Gilbert and Andy Rivett who had been working with Rye College students over the last year and had organised the event.

The debate gets going

Damian Cosgrove was elected to the chair and skilfully introduced topics raised such as lowering the voting age to 16, introducing Skills for Life education into the school curriculum, and promoting the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme at the College. He invited his colleagues, Noah Nelson-Smith, Melitsa Nicolau and Harrison Cruwys to speak in turn. A vote was taken each time and the audience, which included Cllrs Ian Potter (chairman of the Rye Academy Trust) and Jo Kirkham, a former teacher at the college, were invited to cast their vote.

Under Any Other Business, the students were invited by your Rye News reporter to submit regular accounts of matters of interest perhaps raised at student council meetings. These would help keep the college in touch with the wider community, besides further developing their skills. It was agreed that this event should be repeated at a future date.