Prime Minister visits Giles Academy for Science and PSHE lessons

Prime Minister visits Giles Academy for Science and PSHE lessons

The Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak returned back to school when he visited Giles Academy today as he plans for a smoke-free generation.

The visit to Giles Academy followed on from the King’s Speech on Tuesday 7th November 2023, where King Charles III confirmed that the UK Government will introduce legislation regarding smoking and vaping.

It was particularly fitting for the Prime Minister to meet students in Years 8 to 10, as it will soon be illegal for people born on or after 1 January 2009 to be sold cigarettes. This will mean that students around 14 years of age should never be able to put their health at risk by smoking.

The Prime Minister was accompanied by Matt Warman MP where they visited both science and PSHE lessons at Giles Academy and made the most of the opportunity to meet and speak to staff and students to get their views.

Mr Castley, Teacher of Science delivered an eye-opening science lesson where Year 10 students placed real cigarettes in bottles to discover what is actually inhaled by smokers. Students were shocked by the amount of smoke a single cigarette created and how they could see the residue tar.

The Prime Minister then visited a PSHE workshop led by Mr Hind, Deputy CEO that was educating Year 8 students about the facts and consequences around vaping and smoking. Learning how expensive it is, especially if you get addicted, certainly made students think again about even trying it once.

Amelia Pretka in Year 10 said “It’s a good idea to make it harder for young people to vape as it is obvious that shops target children through advertising as they try and make everything as colourful and appealing as possible. Shops shouldn’t be allowed to have them on display by tills and so easily accessible.”

Jack Bradley in Year 8 said “I hope they do something about disposables vapes as it is not environmentally friendly using plastic and batteries that are not recycled.”

George Skipworth in Year 8 said “I don’t think the shops who sell vapes really care about people’s health as they still sell them to under 18’s because are only interested in making money!”

Bonnie Davies in Year 8 said “I was really impressed that the Prime Minister visited our school. I think he’s definitely doing the right thing to stop people smoking. For too long people have been able to smoke or vape despite it not being good for their health.”

The Tobacco and Vapes Bill will include measures to curb youth vaping, which is something that all schools will welcome as vaping has become a growing issue nationally. Last term, Giles Academy students from the whole of Year 9 had a one-hour assembly as part of the PSHE programme, which focussed on electronic cigarettes and vaping devices. Students learnt about dangers and harms that can be caused by vaping and in addition to this counterfeit and unlicensed devices that are making their way into the UK that can contain nicotine levels that are ten times stronger.

Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak said “I want to build a brighter future for our children, which means taking the necessary decisions for the long-term interests of our country.”

Mrs Lucy Conley, Chief Executive Officer at South Lincolnshire Academies Trust said “The Prime Minister’s visit is a fitting reward for the staff and students at Giles Academy, as the school has been on an incredible transformational journey since joining our Trust. The visit follows on from a successful Ofsted inspection where the school is graded a ‘Good school with Outstanding leadership’ and the provisional Progress 8 scores announced last month, show the school is performing above the national average and is the top performing secondary school in the Boston area. We are immensely proud of how all the schools in our Trust support our students pastorally and we welcome legislation and restrictions around smoking and vaping. It was a pleasure to see how engaging the Prime Minister was and that he took the time to visit our school. I am sure this visit by the Prime Minster is something our students will remember forever as our young people can look ahead to a healthier future.”

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