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Millburn Academy pupils take part on Scottish Independence mock referendum

1st April 2014

84% of pupils at Millburn Academy in Inverness turned out to vote in a mock referendum on Scottish independence. 934 of the 1129 pupils at the school cast their votes on Friday 28 March and listened to the school tannoy at 3.20pm to hear the result.

572 pupils (62%) voted “no” to the question: “Should Scotland be an independent country?”

346 voted (37%) “yes”.

16 papers were spoiled with 195 pupils choosing not to vote.

Senior pupils Isla MacKenzie, Sarah MacKenna, Katie Knight and David McIntyre acted as the Presiding Officers during the count and the result was announced by David McIntyre. Head Teacher Gavin MacLean thanked everyone involved for their hard work in running the mock election and praised all the young voters for their interest and enthusiasm. The process was superbly supported by a number of ‘advocates’ from various years with Mr McDiarmid and Mrs Fraser of the Geography/Modern Studies department providing guidance as needed.

Mr McDiarmid said: “The process was designed to give young people a taste of what voting is all about and to encourage them to take a full part in the process. There has been a real buzz about the school over the past few days and it has been good to see the pupils play such a prominent role at every stage. I’m sure those who will be eligible to take part in the Referendum in September are looking forward to casting their vote for real.”

The mock referendum was organised by the school pupil council in partnership with election officials at The Highland Council and follows a decision by the Council’s Community Planning, Public Engagement and Equalities Committee to involve younger people in voting.