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    Belgium

    A student report from the recent Year 12 trip to Brussels:-

     

    "Year 12 European Union Trip

    Upon an early start on the morning of Thursday, 25th April, Year 12s two Politics classes, accompanied by Mr Little (Subject Leader, Politics & Citizenship), Mr Martin (Business Study teacher) and Mrs Murphy (Pastoral Support worker), began an exciting journey to Brussels, the home of the European Union and Parliament as part of their second Unit of Politics AS.  The trip was designed to give an illuminating and insightful opportunity to analyse the interworking of the EU.

    Upon arrival we were greeted by a welcoming sun, as we took in the picturesque surroundings, with a contrast of modern architecture with the more quaint buildings, creating the idyllic nature Belgium is renowned for.  On our way to the EU Parliament we stole the opportunity to appreciate our surroundings: St Michael and Gudula Cathedral, Palais de Justice and the British Embassy, being only a few of the gems Brussels has to offer.

    Once at the European parliament we were welcomed into a conference room, where we were invited to listen to an intriguing talk on the function and role of an MEP by Liberal Democrat, Andrew Duff, and his advisors.  Students asked questions on the benefits and consequences of belonging to the EU and gathered some useful and enriching facts for their summer exam this year.

    That night, everyone enjoyed a well-deserved sleep in the accommodating ‘Hotel Barry’ and once well rested the morning after students and staff prepared for the day ahead.  Students were given the chance to experience the urban scene by using Brussels’ Metro station to travel to the Parliamentaruim.  Whilst there was a little confusion in relation to the navigation, it was all very thrilling, with students enjoying the delicacy of Belgian waffles in the underground!

    After assembling outside the building, students participated in a role play exercise, where they acted as MEPs and had to collectively decide on whether or not to employ certain initiatives for Europe.  Again whilst a delightful experience was enjoyed, it also allowed students to experience first-hand the work of the EU and its impact on the UK.

    Returning home on Friday the students and staff had a wonderfully educating expedition to Brussels and are now feeling confident in their knowledge of the EU and hope to apply it to the context of their course.