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Cash for young citizens

Student councils in Edinburgh's secondary schools have been given an extra pound;2,000 each to contribute to school life. Teachers will be provided with resource materials to help develop the councils.

Ewan Aitken, executive member for children and families at Edinburgh City Council, said: "Through the Youngedinburgh strategy, we are committed to creating a city where every young person matters and where young people are recognised as citizens of today, not just tomorrow."

The decision to provide extra funding was agreed at a full council meeting in January - the first to hear directly from young people's representatives on an agenda set by young people. The initiative is based around the following principles:

* Each council should be representative, democratic, fair and inclusive.

* The money cannot be used to buy things the school has a legal duty to provide.

* Young people should be making the decisions from start to finish.

* Each council must consult with all students in the school.

* The money is not to set up a council but be spent, for example, on projects and events.

* Councils should learn from what goes well and not so well.

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