BCE students take control of their education at this year’s Festival of Ideas! 


​2022 Student Voice Consultants.​

There was a buzz coming from the State Library over the school holidays as 75 high school students from Brisbane Catholic Educations (BCE) put their heads together at a student-led program, Festival of Ideas (Tuesday 27 September).  
The Years 7 to 12 students and the BCE Student Voice Consultants gathered to co-create ideas for changing their own educational experience, as well as ideas for system improvement at their school. They then presented them to Executive Director, Dr Sally Towns, and other Executive Team members.  
The annual event, unique to BCE, empowers students to listen and learn from each other, work collaboratively, and take responsibility for their education.   
Referring to the bespoke program, BCE Executive Director, Dr Sally Towns, called BCE “an education provider with a difference, leading the way in Queensland by engaging student voices to help improve their educational experience.” 
“I couldn’t have been more impressed at the maturity and insight shown by our students,” Dr Towns said.  
“There was a buzz at the brainstorming stations where ideas were coming at a million miles per hour 
“They shared their voice on topics such as equity, connection and celebration of culture.  
“As a former educator myself – I know how proud their teachers and parents would have felt if they’d been a fly on the wall today. “  
Dr Towns said BCE is the only education sector running this type of opportunity for its students, and the large numbers participating showed its value to students 
“We believe that when students are informed and provided the opportunity to have a say about their education, students thrive and feel a stronger sense of belonging and community within their school,” she said.  
“Festival of Ideas is an entirely bespoke event – not seen in the independent or the state sector. 
“The fact that teenagers are giving up a day in their holidays to come together like this is proof alone that this is what they value – having their voice heard and helping curate and lead the event. 
“And the proof-point is our newest campaign More2Me, a professional learning package for secondary school educators aimed at sharing the unique student perspective and effective ways to support student mental health 
“More2Me was created from student feedback from the 2021 Festival of Ideas and is launched this month across BCE schools.”   

 About Student Voice 

Established in 2018, the Student Voice Consultant Team consists of over 20 secondary students from across BCE’s 146 schools.  
Their vision: BCE is a community of schools where students and staff work cohesively to create a student focused education system that empowers students to shape and enrich our world.  ​

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