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14 June, 2005

National Youth Parliament Competition Holyrood winners announced

First Minister, Jack McConnell and Presiding Officer, George Reid will present awards to the young winners in the second year of the Holyrood model of the National Youth Parliament Competition. Pupils from Angus, Ayr and Perthshire will attend a prize-giving ceremony in the Scottish Parliament Chamber on June 16th.

Logo for the National Youth Parliament Competition Holyrood model.

Organised by the Citizenship Foundation and sponsored by Norwich Union, the National Youth Parliament Competition helps bring to life the process of politics and government by offering young people the opportunity to set up and video their own parliamentary session.

With over a decade-long track record of involving Scottish schools in the Westminster model, teams in Scotland were this year offered the chance to recreate the Scottish Parliament instead of the House of Commons.

This year, the Scottish Parliament and the Citizenship Foundation also produced a video to support the competition, following a school through the process of putting together a mock parliament, and including interviews with the First Minister, the Presiding Officer and other MSPs. A copy of this video was distributed for free to every secondary school in Scotland.

Chosen by a panel of MSPs, Montrose Academy, Angus was named the overall winner and also picked up individual awards for three of its pupils in the roles of Best Backbench MSP, Best Opposition Spokesperson (Question Time) and Best First Minister. Belmont Academy, Ayr won Best Question Time, as well as awards for Best Opposition Spokesperson and Best Presiding Officer, with Morrison’s Academy, Perthshire receiving the prize for Best Minister.

Tony Breslin, Chief Executive of the Citizenship Foundation says, "Now in its second year, the competition continues to attract entries of a high standard. The introduction of a Holyrood model has worked really well, giving students in Scotland the opportunity and choice to learn about how Parliament works at both Holyrood and Westminster."

Nick Pierson, Head of Public Affairs at Norwich Union comments:

"Young people are often accused of being apathetic when it comes to politics; the high calibre of entrants in the National Youth Parliament Competition - Holyrood model, goes a long way to help dispel this argument.

"Their passion for debating key devolved issues demonstrates how important it is to give young people an opportunity to get involved with politics. Norwich Union is delighted to be involved with the competition for a third year."

To find out more please email:

Notes for editors:

If you are a member of the media and you would like to attend the prize giving, please contact:

Richard Holligan, Scottish Parliament

richard.holligan@scottish.parliament.uk Tel: 0131 348 5606

RNID Typetalk calls welcome

We want to do everything we can to ensure that everyone is able to visit the Scottish Parliament. If you have any specific access requirements in relation to your visit, please contact the number Richard on the number above.

For other enquiries please contact:

Rebecca Irani, PR officer, Citizenship Foundation

rebecca.irani@citizenshipfoundation.org.uk Tel: 020 7367 0525

About the Citizenship Foundation

The Citizenship Foundation is an independent charity (no. 801360) which aims to empower individuals to engage in the wider community through education about the law, democracy and society. Founded in 1989, we focus particularly on developing young people’s citizenship skills, knowledge and understanding. www.citizenshipfoundation.org.uk

Our work includes:

• A comprehensive range of citizenship resources for a wide audience from teachers to young offenders.

• Nationwide and international training programmes.

• National active learning projects for secondary schools.

• Community projects to develop citizenship education as a collective responsibility.

• Research to advance our understanding of best practice in citizenship education.

2. Sponsorship of the National Youth Parliament Competition is part of Norwich

Union’s responsible citizenship programme, which seeks to encourage individuals, business and Government not only to explore their rights but to take responsibility for their actions (www.aviva.com).

3. The National Youth Parliament Competition is open to teams of 11-18 year olds

across the UK, whether as a school or youth group entry, or independently. The Holyrood model of the Competition was launched by George Reid MSP at the Scottish Parliament in October 2003. Scottish teams may choose to enter either the Holyrood or Westminster model (or both).

4. The National Youth Parliament Competition supports the Scottish Framework of

Education for Citizenship and National Priority 4 (Values and Citizenship).

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