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Children and Young People's Participation

"Children who are capable of forming views have a right to receive and make known information, to express an opinion, and to have that opinion taken in to account to age, maturity and capability of the child."

  • There is a fine balance to be struck between giving a child a voice and encouraging them to make informed decisions, and over-burdening them with decision-making - particularly where they may have insufficient experience and knowledge
  • Where possible, children should participate in decision-making processes including:
    • Setting learning goals and outcomes
    • Contributing to assessment and planning
    • Having discussions about choice of school and provision
    • Contributing to review and progression planning.

Principles of Participation Checklist

This checklist was drawn up by young people:

  • Show us respect
  • Involve us in deciding/organising what/when/where
  • Make sure adults don’t take over
  • Make things more interesting - make things fun
  • Don’t make it too serious (making activities user-friendly)
  • Pay attention: don’t talk: listen
  • Let us talk with decision makers
  • Let us know what is going on
  • Talk afterwards and explain things

Examples of Feedback from Young People

'I don't know whether I've been listened to?'

'You never see the same person twice and they don't make decisions'

'Sometimes I worry about where I will live'

'I like it when teachers ask me if I need help. I find Maths hard'

'People ask me the same stupid questions'