Students Across the Group Engage in Lively COP28 Simulation Events
Last week, United Learning in partnership with the British Council, hosted two COP28 simulation events for secondary students across 23 of the Group’s schools.
Inspired by the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference, taking place in Dubai from 30th November – 12thDecember, the events were held at William Hulme’s Grammar School in Manchester and the British Council Headquarters in Stratford, London.
Following on from last year’s event to mark COP27, this year’s events mimicked the real-life conference and challenged students to work together in teams to produce a global agreement on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Students played the role of world leaders, Non-Governmental Bodies (NGOs) or media representatives to negotiate a climate deal that would keep the global temperature from rising above 1.5%.
After a keynote address, students got straight to work, entering negotiations and suggesting ways to prevent global temperatures from rising further. Their proposals were modelled in a real-life climate simulation using specialised computer software so that they could see how their ideas would work in practice.
As well as encouraging students to consider the challenges our planet faces, the event was an excellent opportunity for them to strengthen their communication and presentation skills and gain confidence speaking in a public setting.
One of the students attending the London event, Sasha from Parkside Community College, said:
“I’ve found the day to be very interesting. It’s really fascinating to experience this kind of event and the different political dynamics of each country.”
Another student who attended the London event, Maya from Guildford High School, added:
“It’s been really eye-opening. When each country was talking about what it was pledging to do, it sounded really impressive. But it turns out that we need to do so much more to reach the goals that were decided on at the Paris Agreement.”
Anna Bush, Deputy Director of Strategy and Performance at United Learning, said:
“Following on from the success of last year's event, we were thrilled to once again partner with the British Council to deliver a fantastic COP simulation experience to our students. We are particularly pleased to have expanded the initiative this year, with events hosted for our students in the North and in the South, enabling even more of our young people to get involved in and benefit from the opportunity.
“It was great to see students engage so enthusiastically in the activities, both in London and Manchester, and work together to produce an agreement on reducing carbon emissions. Events like these are a crucial part of how we deliver an Education with Character to our students and, in support of our Group sustainability ambitions, encourage our young people to engage in important conversations around the impact of climate change.”