Sunderland’s RE Ambassadors head to Westminster

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A GROUP of students will be talking religion when they head to the Houses of Parliament next week.

Sunderland’s RE Ambassadors have been chosen as part of a national competition to present their thoughts and findings to MPs in Westminster.

The group of students – Adam Tasker, Angelo Camet, Gillian Butler, Kimberley Sebborn and Ryan Steele – all pupils at Venerable Bede CE Academy, qualified to become RE Ambassadors for the national Religious Education Council earlier this year.

They are one of 19 groups of RE Ambassadors at schools across the country.

The Tunstall Bank school pupils, who are all in Year 9, aim to raise awareness of religious education, talk about faith issues in school and in the wider community.

The students consulted with people from across Wearside on their question: “Why should we learn about each other’s beliefs and values?” and thanks to all their responses, they have been chosen to take their findings to London.

David Johnson, RE teacher at the school, said: “The young ambassadors have now realised that they can compete and win against other schools from across the country, and really appreciate all of the support they have received locally.

“This is exactly the sort of thing our young people should be getting involved in – developing new skills, thinking beyond their own school community and reflecting upon different views and opinions.”

The group is preparing for their visit to the House of Commons on Monday.

Gill Booth, headteacher at Venerable Bede, said: “The next step will be really exciting for them. Walking the corridors of power and debating with Members of Parliament will be an experience they will never forget.”

The national selection of RE Ambassadors and competition to meet MPs was organised by Sarah Smalley, of the Religious Education Council.

She said: “We were very impressed by what the Sunderland pupils had achieved and would like to congratulate them on being chosen as one of the most successful teams.”