Could Sixth-Formers be voting soon?

The lowered voting age in the Scottish referendum added a special frisson of interest to this year’s visit to the Houses of Parliament by Year 12.

The QE Sixth-Formers travelled to Westminster knowing that, like their Scottish contemporaries, they might be given the right to vote at 16 and 17.

The tour allowed the 23 boys and accompanying staff to see the Central Lobby, the chamber of the House of Commons and Westminster Hall – the last remaining part of the original palace.

“Following events in Scotland, it may be that the voting age could be reduced in the rest of the UK,” said Helen MacGregor, Politics teacher and Head of History at QE. “The knowledge that this particular cohort might gain the right to vote certainly added to the experience, which the boys found highly stimulating. They particularly enjoyed brushing shoulders with senior politicians such as former Education Secretary and now senior Tory Whip, Michael Gove.”

""As well as the tour of the buildings, the boys enjoyed a discussion with Parliament’s Education Service staff. Topics covered included comparing and contrasting different voting systems, including first-past-the-post and proportional representation, as well as putting together a manifesto.

“The visit has great inherent interest in its own right,” said Miss MacGregor. “It also helps to reinforce and build on what the boys have studied in School.”