Benalla P-12 College School captains recently visited Parliament House on the invitation of Federal Member for Indi Cathy McGowan.
School captains Kira Allen, Nathan Dowe, Jason Lang and Jamieson Nichols, along with Year 12 coordinator Richard Hubbard, undertook a guided tour that explained the symbolic nature of the design of the new parliament house and then were given a behind-the-scenes look at how our government operates on a day-to-day basis.
They also took in the opportunity to see famous artworks by Tom Roberts, Pro Hart and Arthur Boyd as well as a 1297 copy of the Magna Carta.
‘‘Over lunch in the Members Dining Room our captains discussed the issues facing youth in Benalla and what leadership means to them with the member for Indi, and were introduced the speaker of the house, the Honourable Tony Smith,’’ Year 12 co-ordinator Richard Hubbard said.
‘‘After lunch the captains enjoyed being in the public gallery for a lively question time followed by a discussion, in Ms McGowan’s office, of what they had observed and learned during the course of the visit.
‘‘The captains then presented a gift made up of products from the Stephanie Alexander Garden,’’ Mr Hubbard said.
‘‘This was warmly received as Ms McGowan fondly remembered her visit to the Waller St Campus and her tour through the garden.’’
The captains would like to publicly thank Ms McGowan and Benalla P-12 College for this unique opportunity.
‘‘This was a wonderful opportunity for our school captains to be able to have in-depth discussions on issues facing our local youth with Cathy McGowan and to be able to experience a day in parliament,’’ principal Barbara O’Brien said.
‘‘We are very keen for our students to have opportunities to visit Canberra and learn more about our parliamentary system.
‘‘Recently students in years 5 and 6 attended a four-day Canberra excursion, they also had the unique experience of parliament and being able to watch parliament and learn about the Senate and House of Representatives.
‘‘They also visited the Australian War Memorial, Questacon, National Museum and the Australian Institute for Sport.’’