Four of the students now have to appear to give their oral submission, and as this is obviously not something they have experience in doing, they got some expert advice:
Yesterday the student submitters had a very exciting visit from a lobbyist called Mark Unsworth. He came to help us with our verbal submission to the education and science select committee.
Mark’s firm works with a lot of big businesses like Air NZ, Coca Cola and Telecom. Usually clients would have to pay but Mark was very kind and gave us some advice for free. Mark told us about what it is like to go in front of the committee of MPs and helped us with our speeches. He also asked some questions that the MPs might ask, so we were ready for anything they might throw at us.
Mark was very helpful and we are very thankful for his help and the free pens.
I helped out their teacher in contact with Mark. I just love the fact that the inquiry actually has students submitting to it, as well as teachers, other education professionals and many from the ICT sector. But really great to see students wanting to prepare for their submission, so they can be as effective as possible. If I was at intermediate school, I’d be a bit freaked about appearing before a group of MPs. But it is so vital those setting policy do hear from students, as well as adults. I think we forget how perceptive students can be. I recall at school that we all knew who were the good and the bad teachers – what methods worked to inspire us, and which turned us to sleep.