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MLA Young takes students to school

By October 25, 2022No Comments
Lloydminster MLA Colleen Young speaks to the Eco9 class at E.S. Laird Middle School. Taylor Weaver Meridian Source

 

What is the role of an MLA? How do provincial politics work? What role does an MLA play at the federal level? What is your favourite part of your job? Those were some of the questions answered by Lloydminster MLA Colleen Young during a recent talk with the Eco9 class at E.S. Laird Middle School. 

Designed as a year-long ‘learn-by-doing’ program with a big focus on outdoor education, Eco9 students get the credits they need to graduate while taking a more hands-on approach in the classroom.

With that in mind, teachers Shaun Donald and Erin Claxton thought students could learn a thing or two about the Canadian government from Young, who spoke about how she got into politics, her role in politics, and the important role leadership plays in politics.

“I’m here today to visit with the Eco9 class at E.S. Laird Middle School and we’re going to have a chat about some of the things they’re learning about government,” said Young. “I’ll share with them my experiences, how I got elected, what government does, those kinds of things.

“I’m hoping we can have a great interactive conversation and I’m hoping they can share with me the things they’ve learned.”

Young noted the class was also recently visited by Saskatchewan’s Lieutenant Governor Russ Mirasty and had a great chat with him.

Another important point Young wanted to drive home to students was the fact no matter the level, leadership plays a pivotal role in politics.

“I’m hoping to inspire them to know that no matter where they are in their lives, they can be leaders, even if it’s in a minor way. I just want them to know we’re all leaders in some way,” she said. “There might even be some future politicians in the room.

“Leadership is when people take an interest in politics. Most people don’t, and most young people don’t, so if they have an interest in it and want to step up and be leaders in their communities in the future, I’m here to help support them in that.”

For teachers like Donald, having guest speakers, including local politicians coming into the classroom, provides students with a learning experience they normally wouldn’t get in a regular classroom setting.

“We do this every year, but this is our first time having an MLA here,” he said. “We usually go talk to the director of the school division and the mayor of the city, and have been doing that for six years, and this year we decided to invite our MLA.

“So far this year we’ve already talked to the director of the school division as well as the mayor, and we’re hoping to attend a meeting of city council in the future.”

Prior to the presentation, Eco9 student Ciara Harrison said she couldn’t wait to meet MLA Young and learn more about her as a person.

“It’s interesting to learn how everything, including government, works,” she said. “I’m hoping to learn a little bit more about Colleen’s job. I think she’s been doing a good job for Lloyd.”

Donald is hoping students walked away from the experience with a better understanding of the role of an MLA and how government works.

“I hope they get an idea of what the Government of Saskatchewan does and how they might be able to get involved if there’s something they’re not enjoying, find frustrating, or don’t understand.”