STUDENTS from Arrow Vale Academy will learn about the importance of elections as part of Redditch Council’s democracy work in schools.

Officers from the council are working with Arrow Vale Academy to hold its own special election on Thursday, March 13.

The election will give all students the opportunity to vote for one of three sculpture designs as part of a democracy project. The winning design will be built and placed in the school grounds over the summer holidays.

The voting experience will be on the same lines as normal elections so that students will have an idea of what happens inside a polling station. Polling booths and ballot papers are being provided by the local authority’s electoral services team to make the experience as real as possible.

The count will be held in the theatre with local councillors and politicians invited to observe the proceedings.

Councillor John Fisher, whose portfolio covers democracy, said: “This is a real vote, on something that matters to the students of Arrow Vale. It's a great way to show them how valuable their opinions are in a democratic society.

“Only a third of residents on average vote in local elections, so it is important to teach our future generations to use theirs and make a difference.”

Schools across the borough are being encouraged by council officers to take part in similar, innovative projects and promote participation in democracy.