Labour parliamentary candidate interviewed by Northdown Primary School pupils

Polly Billington with Northdown pupils

Pupils from Northdown Primary School, Margate, welcomed Polly Billington, the Labour Party’s parliamentary candidate for East Thanet, to their school last week to discuss her political aspirations and commitments to the area.

The interviewers were chosen from amongst the school’s ACE navigators, who are voted by their classmates to represent all pupil’s views.

Polly was grilled on her plans for the future of Margate and surrounding area, including housing, infrastructure, breakfast clubs, green spaces and how Labour intends to assist the poor and homeless. The school’s navigators discovered a little of what life is like as an ex-journalist and a politician as Polly talked all about her background and what brought her to stand as the Labour candidate.

Polly said she was impressed with how she was held to account by the children she hopes to serve if she is successful. The children asked a range of challenging questions as they unpicked her plans before Polly met with headteacher Matthew Harris to discuss his vision for the school’s future.

The interview has also been turned into Northdown’s first ACE transmissions podcast, which all pupils will be able to listen to.

The meeting, which was organised by ACE Lead David Read, allowed the youngsters to learn about how important decisions are made on their behalf.

David explained the idea behind the visit: “I am always looking for ways to embed the notion of community in our pupils, and meeting somebody who could be their spokesperson was an opportunity not to be missed.

“The children really enjoyed the experience of meeting and grilling a real politician and Polly very kindly gave her time to answer the children’s questions and see just what Northdown has to offer. It was a very rewarding afternoon.”

14 Comments

    • Interviewed by primary age children for a publicity stunt. I haven’t seen this woman do any interviews and they expect us to be impressed by this?

      • I believe they do, and they’re mistaken.
        Polly has been running an ad campaign on Facebook, to take her piss-poor survey, one of which attracted over 200 comments from the public and not a single one of those was responded to.
        I don’t like politicians in schools, not least because I can’t imagine anything more boring for the poor pupils.

    • I did Peter (AKA MS Pink) and she ignored me! Interesting that in the recently released aspirations none of them included Social Care! The liar Johnson said he would fix Social Care, and didn’t before he was kicked out!

  1. I simply can’t understand why politicians have these primary school visits and publicity shots. Politicians and would-be-politicians should be speaking to the electorate and finding out what they really want and believe. Or at least speaking to students over 16 who will soon be voting and have a far better understanding of what politics really means.

  2. It’s great to see that even people of such a young age are concerned about issues like Housing, green spaces and how Labour want to end child hunger and help in the cost of living. I applaud the work that the teachers at Northdown Primary are providing to their pupils, and also to Polly for going to meet with them!

  3. It’s so important to introduce children to politics and citizenship from a young age, so they have a better understanding and are more likely to vote when they’re older. Primary schools are as important as secondary schools for political engagement – they are community hubs and it’s vital that any future MP is connected with them to understand the issues not only in the education system but also in the wider school community.

  4. I am loth to reply,because of previous rude responses, to any comments about the ex-airport at Manston. But as Manston Airport closed 10 years ago, I think it’s very unlikely that primary school pupils would have much interest in it, if any at all.

  5. Labour candidate visits primary school, a very minor story and yet we get the usual tosh about Manston and uncalled for comments about Ms Billington’s appearance. I would venture to suggest her critics are not exactly a set of Beau Brummells in appearance. Every time this happens it only shows that this HYS is plagued with the usual bunch of old mysognist trolls.
    In short get a life and leave your ire for things that are rather more important.

  6. How about the question “Isn’t it a sad indictment of Thanet Labour that they have to parachute someone in from London to take what increasingly seems like a dead cert seat ?”

  7. I think its great that schools get parliamentary candidates to meet their students but….
    PollyB has yet to condemn her follow Labour Party Councillor for the Catagory A child pornography he was convicted for, I wonder if the school asked her about her child safeguarding views?
    I’m sure PollyB wasn’t happy about what her fellow Councillor did but it seems highly relevant to make sure, especially if she’s visiting schools.
    Unlike other issues like Manston, Gaza,not bringing Southern Water into public ownership, etc supporting Child Safeguarding is not likely to offend any potential voters.
    Like many people, I’ve emailed PollyB on these issues and no response was her choice.

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