Third year pupils at Knox Academy have spent the past seven months working on a short documentary film called ‘It Gets Better’. The film focuses on homophobic bullying in schools and gives hope to young Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgender people that ‘It Gets Better’.
The pupils were part of the Panasonic Kid Witness News project, a Global contest, which asks young people to create an engaging short film with Global importance.
At the Panasonic awards day in Derby on May 4th 2011 the Knox Academy KWN Team were awarded the ‘Best Global Citizenship’ National Award. Out of the fifteen schools involved in the UK, the Knox Academy team were the only Scottish representatives.
Gill Brigg, Education Director for KWN, had this to say about the Knox Academy film. ‘The judging team was deeply impressed by the commitment of the Knox Academy students in bringing such a loud and proud message to the competition. Their film encapsulated the spirit of KWN through placing citizenship at the core and leading the audience through a challenging, yet optimistic, narrative. We loved the film. Well done! We will ensure that this film reaches as wide an audience as possible. Panasonic supports KWN in 679 schools across 26 countries and we will ensure that this film reaches as wide an audience as possible.’
The pupils worked alongside Stonewall Scotland to help create their KWN film. Laura Ferguson, Education Officer at Stonewall was very impressed by the Knox Academy KWN Team and wanted to thank them, she said “I hope this team of motivated and intelligent young people will inspire others around the world to speak out about homophobic bullying; a problem that destroys lives. I was delighted to work with such a passionate group and I’m thrilled that the panel have recognised their efforts.”
Maura Drew, a third year pupil and member of the KWN team said ‘It’s been such a fun day; we didn’t expect to get any award. Some of the final films were really good. I was just pleased that our work has been recognised. I’ve learnt so much about film production from doing this. It’s a great project.’
The team worked with professionals from Panasonic on film production, editing and camera skills.
‘This has been an amazing opportunity for our young people and I am so proud of them. Homophobia is a serious issue in schools and I want to thank these young people for getting the message heard that ‘It Gets Better’. This is our first year in the contest and to come away with the Best Global Citizenship award is really special, I’m truly honoured to work with so many inspirational people.’ Commented Drama Teacher, John Naples-Campbell