Students to voice opinions that could change their world 


Local politicians take note: hundreds of school students from around the Northern Territory will unite this week to have their say about the future they will inherit.

The Charles Darwin University “Schools for Social Change” competition is a chance for students to present their concerns as well as possible solutions for social issues affecting young people. 

CDU Community Work unit coordinator Dr Lester Thompson said the competition was a fun way for young people to reflect on social issues and voice their opinions to politicians, policy makers and the Australian people.

“It aims to generate social consciousness within the young participants, enabling school students to think forward while motivating them to discuss local social and business issues,” Dr Thompson said.

In 2011 the challenge for the students will be to present their ideas on this year’s theme: “What are the social issues that Australian school students find to be the most important to them in 2011? What do these issues mean to students and what is their response to them?

Seven teams of senior high school and middle school students will take part.

“It is important to the Australian community that policy?makers know about the issues concerning young Australians,” Dr Thompson said.

“We want greater knowledge about these issues and some involvement in the responses.

“It it also an opportunity for school students to become more familiar with the types of issues tackled by social work, humanitarian and community workers.”

The competition was designed by CDU’s Social Work and Humanitarian and Community Studies students. The event is run as part of CDU’s annual Learning Community Week, which incorporates a range of events over a week bringing together students, academics, potential students and experienced practitioners. 

The premise is that by working together as a community, solutions can be found to complex social issues.

The competition is at CDU’s Casuarina campus, building Orange 3, on Thursday, May 19 from 9:30am.