EUROPEAN YOUTH PARLIAMENT
Group 1 – whole school approach
16-year-old high school students (1ère = second year of High school in France) + whole school
- Debating skills
- Knowledge of the European Union Institutions
- Tolerance, valuing / respect of cultural differences and diversity
European Youth Parliament France
Step 1: Application to National Parliamentary Session and Selection (January)
Step 2: Committee Preparation (February-March)
Step 3: 3-Day Parliament General Assembly with debates within committees and votes (April)
Steps 4 and 5 are optional and depend on the outcome of the national session (if the school “wins”)
Step 4: Attending the 10-Day International Parliamentary Summer Session
Step 5: Organizing the following year National Parliamentary Session (hosting selected schools for three days)
Since 1987, the European Youth Parliament supports the development of young people into politically aware and responsible citizens by involving them in European political thinking and promoting intercultural understanding. It is the largest European programme dedicated to non-formal political education of young Europeans.
National sessions offer pupils the opportunity to debate on various topics. Pupils from all over the country gather for a three-day meeting and act as parliamentary officials to vote resolutions.
At Nationals, students write a resolution to be debated in General Assembly. They are divided into Committee Work Groups and each school gets to represent one member country from the EU.
The aim of Committee Work is to write a resolution which expresses the combined opinion of the whole committee on a given subject. In Committee Work, a Chair leads discussions and brainstorming about the problems surrounding the given topic, and then encourages students to suggest possible solutions. This is then drafted into a resolution format and finally phrased to make sure that the different points can be understood by all participants.
General Assembly follows the same structure for every resolution.
- The proposing committee is invited to make a 3-minute defense speech.
- Following this, committees are asked to offer a 3-minute attack speech. If the chosen committee does not use the full 3-minutes, the remaining time may be given to another offering committee.
- The floor is then open for debate. All committees should offer points throughout the debate.
- The debate concludes with a 3-minute summation speech from the proposing committee to address all issues raised and answer any outstanding questions in the final bid to defend their resolution.
- The result of the resolution is down to a vote. Each committee is asked to state their votes in favour, against and any abstentions.
At the end of a national session, one of the participating schools “wins” the session (selected by a jury over different criteria) and is then invited to represent their home country at an international session during the summer which gathers 300 young people from all over Europe for ten days. This school is also responsible for hosting the following year national session.
RECOMMENDATIONS / TIPS
Only small groups of students can take part in a national session (usually 9, coming from different group classes but all in their second year of high school). Accommodation and transport expenses must be covered by the school so needs a budget planned ahead.
Make sure the whole school is involved in the project and ready to host the following year national session if they win. The EYP offers management support for organizing the event.