Issued on behalf of Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School Leeds
"Cardinal Heenan pupils Victoria Milne and Joe Mylan, both 16, have won a national competition".
"Maura Rutherford teaches at Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School, Leeds, where pupils have won a BBC Question Time competition"
Celebrities and politicians will descend on Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School, Leeds, next week after students won the right to host an episode of Question Time.
The Leeds school is one of only six schools and colleges nationwide to top a BBC Schools Questions & Answers contest.
A BBC crew will visit the Leeds school on Friday 11 May to film the show. A Cardinal Heenan pupil will be appear on a panel chaired by Kirsty Wark, the presenter of the BBC Two's news and current affairs programme Newsnight.
For their winning entry Cardinal Heenan pupils filmed their own debate on the protestors outside St Paul's Cathedral, London, and in other major cities including Leeds.
Maura Rutherford, a teacher of English at Cardinal Heenan, said: “By debating the issues arising from the protest camps our students showed BBC judges that they enjoy discussing issues that affect them, their communities and the wider world.
“This live BBC broadcast is a wonderful opportunity for pupils to debate directly with leading politicians and people who hold power. Our pupils will be the studio audience. They will be as much part of the programme as those sitting on the panel.”
Cardinal Heenan pupil Victoria Milne, aged 16, said: “Pupils here have been very successful in debating competitions run by The English Speaking Union. It’s a big deal because Cardinal Heenan is one of only a few 11 to 16 schools to take part. We are nearly always up against older sixth formers from private schools.”
Joe Mylan, Head Boy at Cardinal Heenan, 16, said: “We have a big School Council here. It’s run by students, so we are used to debating and arguing a case. We are really looking forward to being filmed by the BBC.”
As part of their prize Cardinal Heenan pupils are taking part in workshops run by Parliament's Education Service. The pupils are learning about politics and how to host a stimulating debate.
The programme will be broadcast by the BBC on The Internet as a live webcast. It will also be shown on the BBC Parliament channel.
The BBC Schools Questions and Answers Challenge is a national competition for 14 – 19 year olds in schools and colleges. It uses the format of the popular Question Time programme on BBC One and Any Questions on Radio 4.
Question Time has been running for over 25 years on BBC One. It is Britain’s most watched political programme. The radio show Any Questions? on BBC Radio 4 has been on air since 1948.
The full list of national winners is:
• Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School, Leeds
• Havering College of Further and Higher Education, Hornchurch, Essex
• Barton Peveril Sixth Form College, Eastleigh, Hampshire
• Belfast Methodist College, Belfast
• Rugby High School, Rugby, Warwickshire
• Uckfield Community Technology College, Uckfield, East Sussex
Photographs by Ben Taylor copyright free
For further information please contact:
Vincent Gibbons, Deputy Headteacher, Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School
T: 0113 336 8818
M: 0750 5564397