Living in Leytonstone: Identity and Belonging
In 2011, the Open Society Foundations’ At Home in Europe Project worked with Leytonstone School
to explore views and experiences of belonging and identity in the London Borough of Waltham Forest. A discussion with a pupils, staff, and members of the wider school community, moderated by BBC special correspondent Razia Iqbal, took place at Leytonstone School. The discussion and a number of smaller, more in-depth interviews were filmed and produced by Chocolate Films
The film shows how the pupils feel about their school environment, particularly the pride they feel as part of a diverse community. It explores their friendships within and outside of school, their views of national and local identity, community cohesion, and interaction, racial and religious prejudice, and the media’s portrayal of young people.
About Leytonstone School
Leytonstone School is an 11–16 secondary comprehensive in northeast London, which has a multicultural and multi-ethnic intake, with a larger proportion of boys due to two local single-sex schools. Incidents of intolerance are rarely encountered and the school has worked with the Holocaust Educational Trust on many occasions over the past five years to spread the lessons of the effects of unchallenged discrimination. Regular events to celebrate Black History Month, Eid, and Christmas are open to and attended by pupils of all faiths and ethnic backgrounds, and the school participates in events in conjunction with Anti-Bullying Week.