Committing to inclusivity

Committing to inclusivity

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BY: Guest Writer
17 Jun 2024

As we continue exploring our theme on the blog this month of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI), we hear from Lorraine Smith, co-founder of the TV production company run by young people, end2end TV CIC, who tells us how all young people they work with are offered the same opportunities and experiences in a supportive environment.

end2end TV CIC at Hurstmere School

In the dynamic world of education, the importance of creativity and inclusivity cannot be underestimated. At end2end TV CIC we are in a unique position of being based in our own multi-camera green screen studio and production control room situated in the grounds of Hurstmere Secondary School in Sidcup, Kent. This enables us to promote our bespoke ‘TV & Film Production’ Arts Award programme inside the curriculum which provides children and young people with opportunities to develop their inner artist and nurture their sense of self, irrespective of their abilities or back story. Arts Award links directly with Hurstmere’s vision and end2end TV have adapted the school’s R-Trails for the studio; the behaviour and attitudes that leaders and staff expect are based on the R-Trails. These are Respect; Teamwork; Resilience; Ambition, Integrity; Leadership and Self- Belief.

Arts Award in the Curriculum

During the academic year of 2022-23, end2end TV worked with pupils who would normally have learning support from the Additional Educational Needs (AEN) department for literacy interventions. In the studio, pupils discussed storylines and how to plan, write and produce their own films as part of Arts Award Discover. Inclusivity was one of the main aims, ensuring that children with different needs and abilities, including those with ADHD, Dyslexia, Social, Emotional & Mental Health (SEMH) concerns, as well as gifted and talented students, were all given equal opportunities to each other. These young students planned and produced their own films independently. Not only did they write scripts and storyboards, as well as learn professional film techniques, but they also used end2end TV’s very own Digifilmix™ techniques, in which pupils use our innovative green screen TV studio to merge with the background around them. Learning so many skills and being able to apply them, the pupils were able to achieve Arts Award Discover. You can watch one of the short films produced here.

Building on this success, end2end TV continued to work with Hurstmere School to develop an Arts Award programme within the curriculum. Since Autumn 2023, a group of Year 10 pupils have been learning professional filming techniques, working towards their Silver Arts Award. The process has been immersive, requiring students to delve into every aspect of filmmaking, from writing scripts and storyboards to animating stories and acting. This hands-on approach nurtured self-confidence and teamwork, whilst honing finer artistic skills and focus.

Geography Studio LessonImage: Geography studio lesson, end2end TV

This spring, a group of Year 9 pupils began working towards their Silver Arts Award by starting to learn about the history of film. They also explored areas of the school they would not usually have access to, under the safe guidance of end2end TV and the Premises Team. This inspired them to develop their very own short film.

The Year 9 group will be linking with the Hurstmere Media Team during the Summer Term. The Hurstmere Year 9 Media Team are a diverse group of pupils from different backgrounds, ethnicities and religion, who worked together to produce a series of short films they dubbed ‘The Pirates’ that sees witty pirates get into trouble and have to work their way out of it. The unique perspectives and talents of each pupil, whether in front of or behind the cameras, can be seen in the resulting films that are mixed live in the studio and control room during their weekly session. The Pirates will now have their own segment in a separate film produced by the Year 9 Silver Arts Award group. Part of the Year 9’s Arts Award journey will see some of this film being shot at the Historic Dockyard Chatham, giving pupils the opportunity to use their skills out on location and tread in the footsteps of other well-known productions that have been filmed there.

pirates control roomImage: Pirates control room, end2end TV

end2end TV’s innovative ethos

What sets end2end TV apart is our absolute commitment to inclusivity. By providing a supportive environment and giving the pupils space and responsibility, we ensure that every child regardless of their background or abilities, can thrive and succeed. Sessions are an opportunity for creativity, technical skills, teamwork and leadership to shine. Additional needs and other challenges are normalised, ensuring young people fit in by standing out from the crowd – for what they can do, and as it turns out it’s fantastic thinking and digital content creation!

Our experiential learning approach and commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion is a positive fit at Hurstmere School, and we are further developing the Arts Award programme as part of the curriculum at school during the coming year. Beginning with introducing an innovative module that includes drone filming and pupils gaining real-life drone operator wings with Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) accreditation; further demonstrating how real life transferable skills and career aspirations fit well into an Arts Award programme.

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