Pupil Voice Groups: The Impact on Schools and Students
Keywords:students, pupil voice groups, education, primary education
Over 30 years ago, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child passed legislation allowing children under the age of 18 to express their concerns in circumstances and decisions that affect them. Because one impact on children under the age of 18 is the educational system, Scotland education has integrated opportunities for students to be involved in the educational process. Pupil voice groups are one of the techniques that have been implemented in Scotland and throughout Europe. These groups allow students to have a voice in their education that may impact development. Researchers sought to identify the impacts of pupil voice groups on student development, the surrounding community, and the school. Researchers identified primary school students from years P-3 to P-6 (7 to 12 years of age) involved in pupil voice groups. Data were collected through focus group interviews, in which themes surrounding benefits, drawbacks, and impacts on the school and community emerged. Results indicated that these groups improve the school and community, and students believe these opportunities allow them to share their opinions on their education. The researchers recommend that further research should examine the perceptions of previously interviewed students towards involvement in pupil voice groups, and the use of pupil voice groups outside of the United Kingdom.
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