OB Politicians return to School
Former cabinet ministers address SABS.
Lured, no doubt, by the persuasiveness of teaching legend, Mike Willis, The Rt Hon. Lord Andrew Lansley CBE (OB 1968-75) and The Rt Hon. Jack Straw (OB 1957-64) both returned to their alma mater this half-term to speak at The Sir Antony Browne Society (SABS). Both OBs are also Board members of the Brentwood School Foundation, which aims to raise money to provide bursaries for pupils who would benefit from a Brentwood School education but whose families do not have the financial means to fund it.
Andrew's talk "How will Brexit change the British Consitution?" focussed around the, perhaps, less publicised areas that will inevitably change once the UK's transition period ends on 31st December 2020, such as potential changes to the UK Human Rights Act, while also recalling some of the seemingly unprecedented decisions made by the previous Speaker of the House during some of last year's debates.
Jack's talk "A cabinet minister's view of how government works" relayed some of the experiences that come with the high pressure of leading a government department. From sudden (metaphorical) exocets out of the blue, that require an urgent response to an impending crisis, to having diplomatic phone calls from the privacy of a train lavatory, this was a highly personal and often humourous account of his time in government (and in the shadow cabinet).
SABS is a society which seeks to broaden and enhance the academic experience of our Sixth Form students. It has proved to be a very stimulating and successful Society for many years, as many of you will have experienced first-hand from your time at the School. It remains a great opportunity for our oldest students as they prepare for life at University and the world beyond, meeting weekly throughout the academic year with excellent invited speakers who stretch and challenge our students in a wide variety of academic areas and society debates.