The St John’s Politics Department are proud to share the dedicated and ambitious work of pupils across the recent academic year. With the longstanding contributions to the St John’s Politics Magazine and most recently, the exciting new addition of ‘Politicised’ The St John’s Politics Podcast!

The St John’s Politics Magazine, The Eagle has been published each term for the last eight years; now into its 20th edition, the magazine has grown impressively over this time. The magazine is researched, written, and edited by pupils, and pupils from across every year group is welcome to write for the magazine. Most recently the interest has risen, with pupil features from Lower School through to Sixth Form!

Current editors Annabel and Safoah host meetings and manage the pupil additions, as well as writing pieces themselves. Features can be written on any topic of their choosing – sport, culture, music, history, current affairs – if it has a political angle.

We are thrilled to see so many pupils taking a keen interest in politics, and key topics. Every edition of The Eagle features a diverse and impressive array of contributions, with pupils showcasing their engagement in political topics and discussions. Moreover, the research, debating and writing skills required to create their feature broadens their future horizons, not just in politics but also across their school subjects.

The latest 20th edition of The Eagle looks fabulous and reads just as well, and it includes our first feature by a Lower School pupil. This outstanding effort has a stunning range of articles including:

Safoah Ntiamoah challenges racism with “It was ok at the time”.
Ollie Smith reflects on the growth of nationalism in 21st century politics.
Radha Peratides takes a creative look at protests.
Shria Crossan looks at the response to Sarah Everard’s murder.
Izzy Khule and Ollie Latham look at both sides of the death penalty debate.
Luca Hatwell asks if time to abolish the monarchy.
Neve Hudson, Tali Gibbons and Eleanor Wilson make the case for their favourite US president
Plus many more fantastic articles!

You can read this and previous editions on the magazine blog, by clicking here.

Head of Politics, Julian Thomas commented: The School politics magazine and the podcast are fabulous examples of the independent learning skills that pupils develop here, not just in politics, but across the School. The magazine is a high-quality publication, edited and written by pupils on a termly basis, an incredible achievement in itself. It is the quality of the articles that is remarkable; often pupils are producing original pieces of work to an undergraduate level. Pupils have set incredibly high standards in previous years, that today’s pupils have matched and improved upon. Even the pandemic has not stopped their passion and academic flair!

Over the last few years podcasts have seen a marked rise in popularity, as they have become a fantastic way to engage with news, topics and content whilst allowing listeners to keep busy. We are delighted to introduce a great new podcast to our community created by three Lower Sixth pupils.

Politicised, the St John’s Politics Podcast was introduced in 2021 and was suggested and conceptualised by Eleanor, Oliver and Dan in Lower Sixth. Whilst staff assist with facilitating the podcast creation, the podcast project is managed, researched, and developed solely by the pupil team.

The podcasts see pupils debating topics and recent political news, and the quality of their arguments is outstanding. Through the Summer Term, pupils have produced three podcasts and in the new academic year they are aiming to produce one every half term. Going forward, the plan is to broaden the political input and invite guests to take part in the recordings, whilst leading the way for future year groups to take part in the leadership of the podcast.

Whilst setting up the podcast has been a courageous and forward thinking move from Eleanor, Oliver and Dan, it is a great new challenge having to explore new skills such as podcast technology! Pupils have taken on the project independently, and we are delighted that is has been well-received across our community.

Episode 1: ‘This episode, we discuss the inevitability of poverty; whether in the current system of capitalism the world is resigned to having a wealth gap and whether a different ideology would prevent this. Exploring the ramifications, reasons for, and the different aspects of poverty, this episode seeks to deconstruct this longstanding issue.’

Click here to listen to Episode 1

Episode 2: ‘In the second episode, we address the growing concern of the overgrowth of the state; especially when it comes to protecting our own rights and freedoms. With the recent Police and Crime Bill in the UK, the response to coronavirus restrictions in the United States, and the issue of the preservation of certain rights, but not others, the question is being asked more than ever. Are there alternatives? Does radical anarchism provide the answer? Or does the state actually have a duty to protect its citizens through law? Many thinkers, Thomas Hobbes to name one, have attempted to defend the right of the state to dictate its citizens’ rights. However, with growing awareness of our own freedoms, are we more vulnerable than ever to tyranny? Politicised will delve deep into the differing viewpoints and face these questions in hope of understanding this complex issue.’

Click here to listen to Episode 2