Marie Genevieve students visit parliament

POSTED: 02/23/12 2:32 PM

St. Maarten – Sixteen six graders from the Sister Marie Genevieve de Weever primary school along with their teachers and support staff, visited the House of Parliament at Wilhelmina Straat in Philipsburg on Tuesday morning. This is the second school visit for 2012.

The group was welcomed by the President of Parliament drs Gracita Arrindell and the students were very enthusiastic to be in the House of Parliament.

Arrindell explained the workings of the country’s parliamentary democracy with specific focus on the roles of Members of Parliament (MPs), named the MPs and members of the Council of Ministers and explained the difference between the executive and legislative branches of Government.

During the enactment of a parliamentary session, students posed a number of questions to their fellow students who were acting as ministers. They also asked the President of Parliament several questions. Students either asked about or addressed several questions to the other students who were acting as ministers about roads; high consumer prices; MPs who don’t show up to work; fuel shortage at the airport; school fees; increases in gas for cars; high Gebe bills and blackouts; how to curb youth violence and crime; vote-buying; the Ombudsman; and why children are not allowed to vote.

Arrindell wants all primary and secondary schools to visit the House of Parliament so they can feel and live what Parliament does.

“I am impressed with the disciplined and inquisitive interaction displayed by the enthusiastic young girls and boys. The pupils are very aware of the issues that live in the community. I applaud the teachers for their hard work and who are doing a great job in teaching the younger generation, the leaders of tomorrow,” Arrindell told the teachers and sixth graders on Tuesday.

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