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Youth Parliament and its controversies

Recently, a new initiative led by the Newton School student Nikoloz Chikhladze hit the Gmail inbox of every AAT student. This new project, Youth Parliament Initiative, aims to create a democratic parliament that will allow students to generate ideas and transform them into projects. The platform will consist of a president and vice-president from every class from freshman to senior, with the addition of an executive council. So far, the election process has only started in three schools: GZAAT, European School, and Newton School. The election was scheduled for January 28th, but because of COVID-related difficulties, it was postponed to February 4th. This initiative has caused some mixed reactions in the AAT student body. To get an idea from a current student who holds a leadership position, here is an interview from a sophomore class president Shota Sikharulidze:

Interviewer: What are your thoughts about the Youth Parliament? do you like the initiative? why or why not?

Shota: I think it is a great chance for people to express their ideas about certain projects and this project can be positive strengthen relationships between schoolmates and represent their classmates.

Interviewer: Are you going to participate in the elections?

Shota: No because I am already in the student council and I decided to give the opportunity to others to have a chance to take part in various projects.

Even though Shota’s attitude is shared by many, there are still plenty who think the opposite. Nicolas Sharvashidze, a former vice-president of the class of 2022 and the founder of the Marmor club, is one of those students. He had this to say about the news:

Interviewer: What are your thoughts about the Youth Initiative?

Nicolas: Though I appreciate the initiative of Nikoloz (Chikhladze), I believe that the project will be quite futile since similar projects (parliaments for teenagers) have been done before and seemed to change nothing. The other initiators of similar projects had been backed by a wide range of international institutions and still didn’t change anything, which is why I do not see any reason for this project to be of any significant benefit.

Interviewer: Then what would you suggest to the students who want to exercise political activism?

Nicolas: As of now I would suggest to people interested in politics to be more active in protests against the coming war in Ukraine (protest against Russia) rather than focusing on extracurriculars they could write in a cv (the irony being the fact that these projects are to be found in thousands of applications, which don’t necessarily make an applicant unique)

As It is clear, the student body has expressed a mixed attitude towards the initiative. Lastly, it would be interesting to see what Luke Chikhladze himself thinks about his initiative.

Interviewer: What motivated you to start the project of youth parliament?

Luka: For a long time now, I have been concerned with the many hardships that our community of high school students experiences, such as lack of education in certain areas. My project serves the exact purpose of addressing these issues - creating a platform consisting of students from different schools to collaborate and attempt to challenge these obstacles as a united force, coming up with concrete solutions by uniting the diverse minds of our participants.

Interviewer: What are your expectations?

Luka: There is one thing I am certain about - we will play an active role in many matters of our education system and student life by spearheading numerous initiatives that aim to serve the community.

Regardless of the diversity of opinion, only the future can tell how successful this project will be. In the meantime, Keep up with the GZAAT Gazette to acquire the latest information about the election process.

Edited by Beqa Ramishvili

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