School councils are a common feature of Primary Schools. They are a means of engaging pupils in strategic decision making about their school. They are a mechanism for enabling pupil voice. The classic model of a school council involves children choosing councillors from their class to represent them. We think this can lead to exclusivity, with some pupils taking on responsibility as school councillors, but most not.
In our school we run a different system, which involves all pupils from Year 2 onwards joining cross-age School Council groups. Every member of staff in our school, apart from our headteacher (who is required to answer the office phone!) also takes part. Each group discusses the same issue and Year 6 pupils record opinions and report these to senior leaders. Our system is highly inclusive and ensures all our pupils gain experience of engagement in democratic decision making. The cross-age element of our system is key - older children take responsibility for enabling younger ones.