Secondary Schools Leadership Program

On Wednesday of Week 10, Shannon Charters and myself (Nick Mead) were extremely fortunate to be invited down to a day at New South Wales Parliament for the Secondary Schools Leadership Program, an annual program that exposes school leaders to the world of politics.

We arrived in Sydney early on Wednesday morning with time to spare. As a result, we capitalised on the experience embracing the scenery of Sydney visiting an array of places including Hyde Park, Saint Mary’s Cathedral, the Art Gallery of NSW and NSW Supreme Court.

Around 9:30AM we made our way to the NSW State Parliament to hear from a number of members and ministers, including Roy Butler, the member for our neighbouring electorate of Barwon. The members gave advice and insight into entering the realm of politics and the key skills required. From there we went into a Q&A segment where students were allowed to ask questions of the representatives. Topics discussed included solutions to the current housing crisis and the workforce shortages occurring in the nursing and education sectors.

We were confronted with the reality of politics watching both the Legislative Council and Assembly in Question Time. Here we witnessed some of the most intense arguments as the Labor Government was scrutinised on responses to recent tragedy of Clare Nowland and the developing issue of fire ants and their effect on agriculture. The spirited debate revealed the heated battle parliament entails. We were lucky to have another Q and A session after the parliament sitting with the Speaker of the Lower House who was in charge of ordering a more civil argument.

After lunch, we ventured in the rain to the Governor's House. Here we engaged in a tour of historical relevance of the ground and chatted with the Governor’s Secretary, Colonel Michael Miller, on the busy role the State Governor has today. We then went and saw the Harbour Bridge, Opera House and other sites before heading back to the airport.

We would like to extend our gratitude towards the NSW Government for sponsoring the program, Farrer PT&F and Mr Smith for organising and putting together this eye opening experience.

Nick Mead, Day Vice Captain

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