They are the leaders of tomorrow but for many school students in the Hastings the biggest worry in their lives right now is not studying for exams but inaction on climate change.
Joining with a growing movement of young people around the world, Patrick Rudd and Theo Last are leading a local effort of young people challenging local politicians and political candidates about their plans for climate change.
The movement, School Strike 4 Climate Action, is inspired by a 15-year-old Swedish student, Greta Thunberg, who started boycotting classes before parliamentary elections in her nation on September 9, 2018.
Back in November students in each state capital and across 20 regional Australian centres followed her lead and walked out of their classrooms to tell politicians that climate inaction is not good enough.
They will repeat the action on Friday, March 15, from 9am, marching from the Glasshouse forecourt to the campaign office of National's candidate for Cowper, Patrick Conaghan.
"We have organised another march for this Friday because with two elections coming up very soon we want to see our candidates at a state and federal level come out and give us hope that governments have a plan to tackle climate change," Patrick said.
"When we marched last November it was very disappointing that our federal MP Luke Hartsyuker couldn't find time to meet with us and hear our concerns," Patrick said.
"We wrote to him and we didn't hear anything and we haven't heard anything since.
"In modern politics it seems our politicians care less about facts and more about keeping their jobs when it comes to action on climate change," Theo said.
The pair stress that despite some criticism of students marching instead of attending classes they feel the protest is important.
"When you are in year 11 or year 12 you don't miss school unless it is important and we believe it is very important that climate change is addressed by our politicians," Theo said.
"Most people now agree that climate change is real but lots of people say that climate change is something that we need to deal with in the future and that it is a problem for our children to deal with.
"But we are the children who have to deal with it and we want those who are elected to represent us to come up with a plan."
"We think it is wrong that as a major stakeholder in feeling the effects of climate change young people are not consulted or included in the conversation about how to tackle the issue," Patrick said.
"After our last march it was very upsetting to hear that state education minister Rob Stokes said all students who marched should be punished.
"It has only been since we started marching and creating a fuss that people are beginning to talk about the issue."
Andrew Woodward, Labor candidate for Cowper said he 100 percent supported the students striking for climate action.
All the candidates running for Cowper at the next federal election were contacted for comment.
For more information or to follow along with the local School Strike 4 Climate Action head to their Facebook page.
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