Isle of Man students wins BBC Schools Question Time

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An Isle of Man secondary school has won the BBC Schools Question Time Competition.

St Ninian's High School, in Douglas, is one of four winning schools that gets to go behind the scenes at the real Question Time.

The school, along with 15 other finalists, had to hold their own version of the programme.

Politics teacher Liam Core said: "It was a real team effort, lots of long hours - but it's all paid off".

The students competed against more than 1,000 schools across the British Isles, and for the final hosted a debate about the relationship between the UK and the Isle of Man and whether it should be changed.

General election

They selected a seven-person panel, including two students, MHKs Anne Craine and Peter Karran and local businessmen, who discussed a wide range of issues from Libya to the Isle of Man budget.

With an Isle of Man general election in September, the students hoped the competition could get more teenagers involved in local politics.

Image caption,
It is the first time a school from the island has won the competition

One student panelist, Serena Luff, 17, said: "It's made me more excited to try out a career as a politician. It made me realise there's alot more behind the scenes.

"We've got the election coming up this year and hopefully it'll get teenagers to vote," she said.

Their performance, at the Douglas Youth Centre on 31 March, was judged by industry professionals and attended by a hand-selected audience.

Anne Craine, Treasury Minister, said: "We have students who can vote from the age of 16.

"We need to engage them in the whole political process and let them know that they have a voice.

"It's exceptionally exciting for the students and I hope it whets their appetite to stand for politics themselves," added Mrs Craine.

Two students will now work with the Question Time production team, sitting in on editorial meetings, helping with aspects of the production and coming up with ideas for marketing the programme.

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