Pupil voice - My school gives me the chance to speak out

3rd October 2008 at 01:00
David Frogley, 13, is a Year 9 pupil at Bognor Regis Community College in West Sussex

What's your favourite subject?

English. I am a loud person, but think a lot of things in my head that I want to express differently. English does just that. Last year I got one of the highest grades in our year for English, and my teacher said it was one of the best tests she had ever marked for the age criteria. My English teacher was the one who really boosted my confidence. She's definitely the best teacher I have ever had.

What makes a good teacher?

A teacher needs a lot of discipline. They need to keep order in the class. However, they need to make the pupils comfortable and let them express how they feel coming into the lesson. They need to be humorous, but not over the top. That, for me, defines a perfect teacher.

What do you most like and dislike about school?

My school gives me the chance to speak out, be who I really am and take advantage of my surroundings. I've never had a teacher I dislike, and I have a decent relationship with everyone in my tutor group. However, it's not all great. There are a lot of disruptive individuals, who like nothing more than to distract every lesson they set foot in. But most of the teachers can control them.

What's the best lesson you ever had?

It is definitely a maths lesson. In New Zealand, when I was in Year 5, maths was always my Achilles' heel. I revised for a mental arithmetic test at the weekend, practising my tables over and over again. I got them correct and was the fastest too. It was like scoring a goal - awesome.

What stops you from learning?

I absolutely loathe it when people answer a teacher back and distract the lesson. It may sound sick and twisted, but I just want them to disappear.

If you were headteacher, what would you introduce at your school?

I would make my school more disciplined, but get the message across loud and clear that if you do behave well, you will be rewarded.

What would you like to be when you are older?

I would like to use my English skills, maybe to become a politician, an author, a television presenter or a journalist. I would like to make a difference to the world.

What are your favourite hobbies?

I love tennis, which I have just started getting into. Football was my number one sport, but tennis is something that I have a new burning passion for. Politics is another hobby of mine; I'm a member of the West Sussex Youth Cabinet. The world will always need people to run it, and I believe I am someone who can make a difference.

What's your favourite slang wordphrase at the moment? What does it mean?

I don't use much slang, but there is a great American one: "That juice ain't worth the squeeze." I think it's great. It basically means something is not worth doing.

What's your most treasured possession?

My dad gave me a shirt with my name printed on it when I was in hospital recovering from a broken arm and wrist. It lifted my spirits. It made me feel like my dad was giving one of his special things to me. It's now hanging up in my room. I feel like it made me even closer to him.

What's your favourite clothes label?

I love nice clothes. I am a bit fussy when it comes to labels. Nike, Adidas and Fred Perry are a few of my favourites.

What celebrity would you most like to be?

I would love to be Jack Black. He is a bit chubby (like me) but he still gets all the ladies. People genuinely like him for who he is.

What's been your most embarrassing moment?

It was when I was playing mini-golf with my gran, mum and younger sister. A group of friends rode by on their bikes and I tried to duck behind a bush so that they wouldn't see me.

Describe your earliest memory

I remember sitting in my pram going into town in Essex, the sound of the rain tapping as it splashed on the pram's plastic roof.

"If I could be prime minister for a day I would ."

Make wealthy people and successful businesses pay starvation tax. Everyone should have a decent standard of living.

"I wish adults would sometimes ."

Listen to what teenagers say, like they were talking to another adult and not a child. They humour us and put us down like we are babies. It really gets on my nerves.

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