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West Oxfordshire school pupils meet police chief
4:20pm Wednesday 13th March 2013 in News
SECONDARY school pupils from West Oxfordshire met Thames Valley Police’s Chief Constable, Sara Thornton, at a have your say day.
The event, at the Langdale Hall, in Witney, began with a video message from Prime Minister and Witney MP David Cameron.
He spoke about how important it was for young people to have a voice in their community and told them to make the most of the day.
Ms Thornton attended the event to help answer some of the students’ concerns about community safety.
She told them: “British policing is based on the principle of public consent. This requires us to engage, to listen and to respond. It is for that reason that we have so many community police officers here.”
The children were able to put questions to a panel of experts from the police, councils and youth organisations, with responses covering the work of the West Oxfordshire Community Safety Partnership, including policing, drugs and alcohol, environmental crime and antisocial behaviour.
The school groups were then asked to decide how they would spend £30,000 in their community. They each chose their top issue and produced a leaflet and poster to support it, before presenting their idea to the panel.
The winning team, from Burford School, received £100 in vouchers, just pipping Woodstock’s Marlborough School and Eynsham’s Bartholomew School Thames Valley Police schools’ officer, Jon Payne, said: “We were extremely impressed with all the ideas the students proposed.”
Bill Oddy, head of community services at West Oxfordshire District Council, said: “One of the ideas from the students last year was so good we implemented it, resulting in an interactive drugs, alcohol and Internet safety event in Witney last month.”
The partnership will follow up on students’ ideas from the event on March 1.