Schools take part in elections

Winning candidates in the Schools elections at Mackie Academy this week
Winning candidates in the Schools elections at Mackie Academy this week

Aberdeenshire’s secondary school pupils have learnt first-hand about democracy and have been shown the true importance of using your vote as part of the latest Aberdeenshire Schools Election Project.

The count took place at Mackie Academy in Stonehaven, with young people from all 17 of the area’s secondary schools, who came together to find out which party and candidate had won in each of the ‘constituencies’.

With 10,659 votes cast the turnout was a fantastic 75.9% which is far higher than in the last Scottish Parliamentary Election of 2011 when the turnout was 50.4%

Each school ran the contest for its own constituency, with pupils being able to stand for each of the five political parties represented in Holyrood.

Pupils owned the project at every stage – nominating their own candidates, running their own campaigns, staffing polling stations and counting the votes.

The project aims to raise awareness amongst young people of the importance of voting and engaging in the democratic process. They then had the chance to cast their vote on both the constituency and regional list ballot papers. However, as in real life, voting was not compulsory.

Mackie Academy Constituency: Rachel Anderson (Greens) 141, Ellie MacDonald (Conservative) 133, Charlotte Murray (SNP) 131, Levi Peddie (LibDems) 75, Callum Steel (Labour) 240, Rejected ballot papers 5, Total votes cast 725.

Mearns Academy Constituency: Ethan-Craig Adamson (SNP) 199, Curtis Hirst (Labour) 48, Jane Lawson (LibDems) 34, Lauren McGill (Conservative) 160, Adam Tait (Greens) 96, Rejected ballot papers 7, Total votes cast 544.

Portlethen Academy Constituency: Dylan Gray (Conservative) 46, Craig McLennan (SNP) 199, Amy Mercy (LibDems) 90, Taylor Ord (Labour) 215, Jordan Taylor (Greens) 94, Rejected Ballot papers 5, Total votes cast 649.