Alliance Leaders Visit IES Uppsala

Alliance Leaders Visit IES Uppsala

Students at Internationella Engelska Skolan Uppsala had a chance to quiz political leaders from the centre-right Alliance parties during a visit to the school.

The four politicians, Conservative party leader Anna Kinberg Batra, Liberal party leader Jan Björklund, Annie Lööf, leader of the Centre party and Ebba Busch Thor, leader of the Christian Democrats, toured the school before taking questions from students, and eventually journalists.

Students asked about topics including Brexit, the military, housing issues in Sweden and the gender pay gap.

Students ask questions of the Alliance leaders in a session moderated by thier classmate Angelica Hagström (left).

Angelica Hagström, 14 of class 8A, was in charge of the event after she was chosen to moderate the session for her classmates.

She said: “It was really fun, but I was nervous as well, because If I said something wrong there would be so many people who heard. I felt a bit special when I was asked to moderate, and that is always nice.”

Angelica had been thinking about her own questions to ask before she was offered the chance to lead the discussion.

She said: "I thought I would ask about the grading systems.  Then when we were going into the class my social-science teacher asked if I could organise the questions a bit. I thought: 'that is no big deal, I can do that’.

“The politicians had good and well-thought-out answers so you knew what they meant, they spoke well. I think it is good to hear them speak directly, because then you can build your own opinion rather than being influenced by what is reported.”

Mr Östling, the school's Principal, welcoming Anna Kinberg Batra.

During the event the politicians presented their ideas of how education in Sweden could develop. They spoke of Pisa, how to make the teaching profession more attractive, education for those newly arrived in Sweden, an increase in the number of hours of teaching that students receive, encouraging parents to make a more active school choice and even externally moderated national tests.

Following on from their press conference the political leaders met with Mr Östling, the school’s Principal to discuss issues around education and to hear his views.

He said: "It was a great honour for us to host the visit and show our school to a few of the most influential politicians in the country. We are proud of our school and our students, and we have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to have our students show their knowledge of politics by the excellent questions they asked. Personally, I am very pleased to have shared the story of IES Uppsala and to have been given the chance to discuss educational matters and concerns with people who can really make a difference on the national level."

Mr Östling and Mr Grant, head of year 7 and maths teacher, (right) hold a meeting with the four Alliance leaders.