On 10 February two teams from Birkdale took part in the regional heats of the European Youth Parliament competition at The Crucible Theatre, Sheffield. Despite this event taking place less than two weeks after the UK left the EU it was evident that our students were very passionate and well informed about European politics.

The Committee for Civil Liberties (LIBE) were extremely proactive and received great credit from the judges for their willingness to volunteer and keep the debate going. Jamie gave a succinct and insightful summation speech on the humanitarian crisis within Yemen whilst Ahmed delivered a very well informed and convincing rebuttal against the resolution for equal opportunities. Lucy led the resolution on solutions for tackling Euroscepticism with clarity and enthusaism. Other members of the delegation Rowan, Christian, Sasha, Josh and Declan took an active part in the floor debates.

The Committee for Constitutional Affairs (AFCO) demonstrated great team solidarity and were praised for their teamwork and willingness to engage in the floor debate. Finn delivered a passionate and convincing speech on the importance of supporting disabled access for tourists across the EU and Olivia presented an outstanding and powerful speech on ways of widening participation in European politics amongst the youth across the continent, modelling her own arguments in an exemplary manner. The rest of the team, Sophie, Matt, Maddie, Yasmin, Tom and Harris worked very hard in the floor debates and retained a commanding presence based on impressive and wide-ranging research of the issues.

The standard of debating was extremely high across both our teams and it is very exciting that LIBE was selected to go forward to the National finals which will be held in Liverpool in June. Unfortunately AFCO narrowly missed being chosen as the second team to progress to the next stage but that takes nothing away from the excellent job that they did in flying the flag for European relations.