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Mock Scottish Independence Referendum Gets Girls Voting

Friday, 19 September 2014

Bolton School Girls’ Division held its own Mock Scottish Independence Referendum to encourage the girls to engage with this historic occasion.

History teacher Mrs Pritchard and some of the girls gave an assembly on the 10th of September about the intricacies of the Independence Referendum. The girls then had just over a week to think about and discuss the issues before the vote.

On Thursday, as millions in Scotland turned out to cast their votes, the girls flocked to the polling stations in school to make their decision. They were asked, “Should Scotland be an independent country?” and given the not-so-simple choices of ‘Yes’ and ‘No’.

The results were announced in Friday’s assembly:

Should Scotland be an independent country?
YES 57 votes 15%
NO 322 votes 85%
Turnout: just under 50%

The Girls’ Division voted that Scotland should remain part of the UK with a majority of 70%.

Although the girls’ result was ultimately the same as Scotland’s final decision, there are some striking differences. In Scotland, the turnout was almost 85% and the ‘No’ vote gained a majority of just 10%, with 45% of voters choosing ‘Yes’ on the day!

It was great to see 379 pupils cast their votes in the Mock Referendum after listening to the ideas of both the Better Together and Yes Scotland campaigns. It also gave the girls the opportunity to become more involved: it encouraged them to look beyond the information provided by their peers during assembly and come to their own conclusions based on the facts.

The Mock Referendum has hopefully sparked their interest not only in the Scottish independence debate but also in politics in general.

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Two girls cast their votes

Two girls cast their votes