A BUNCH of budding journalists from The Winston Churchill School immersed themselves in a nationwide BBC media project this year, culminating in the two tenacious facilitators being invited to London’s Broadcasting House.
When avid Year 10 newshound Thomas Walgrove spotted the BBC News School Report 2016 opportunity, he and Yasmin Howbrook approached Subject Leader Jane Finney, who helped their project become a reality and the outstanding success that transpired.
Now in its 10th year, more than 1,000 schools and 30,000 participants got stuck into the 2016 scheme, which is endorsed by eminent TV News Presenter (and Thomas’ hero) Huw Edwards.
He said: “It is a great way to get young people interested in the wider world and give them their own voice.”
At Broadcasting House, Yasmin (whose role model is the BBC News Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg) and Thomas, along with numerous other hopefuls, went under the scrutiny of the TV company’s panel. They were thrilled when they heard they were the ones selected to interview the man himself, Huw, in situ, and witness him presenting News at Five live.
Proud of her students, Jane told the News & Mail: “It is an incredible accolade to them. Huw said they were ‘bright young journalists, driven about news’.”
BBC Online Editor Alex Morrison helped the St John’s school get the project off the ground. He was very impressed with the Winston contingent, being the largest, comprising 12 subject groups from Years 7 to 10. Each tackled three media forms: written, radio and video, focusing on local, national and world current affairs.
Jon Chandler at the University of Surrey also gave 18 reporters the chance to use and record on the state-of-the-art equipment at the Media Centre.
From textiles (left Charlotte Wye), art and drama to philosophy, history and Brexit in cartoons, more than 70 roving reporters addressed a diverse range of news stories and interviews. These were edited by another group and overseen by Editors-in-Chief Thomas and Yasmin.
All reports have now been published online and can be accessed at schoolreport.yeoutbox.com or via the interactive BBC map at bbc.co.uk/schoolreport.