Children's Advisory Panel (CAP) Galway Educate Together (GETNS)

GETNS began to trial a new model to include student voice in school life in 2022. Prior to this, the school a had very active Student council. The school was introduced to the model of Children’s Advisory Panel (CAP model) via training with Hub na n-Óg. The CAP model is different from a student council in that all students have the opportunity to engage and attend meetings.


How it works

At GETNS, whole class meetings are held regularly to discuss important topics and issues based on their GET Outside Project, and Ethical Education Curriculum. Ideas, suggestions, and feedback are gathered at these meetings. Following the class meetings, smaller more focused CAP meetings are held, in which two children are invited from each class to present the ideas of their class. The model is phenomenally successful at GETNS and seen as more equitable than the student council. The model is supporting the school in addressing their responsibilities under Article 12 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and enhance the agency, participation, and voice of all students in the school.

It is hoped that the school can engage with academic research in the next school year that can provide us with feedback as to how the children feel in terms of their voice and agency in school life and where we can continue to make improvements.