The Burnet News Club Awards Ceremony 2021

On July 1st, we held our annual awards ceremony for young people taking part in the Burnet News Club. For the second (and hopefully last time!) we hosted it online.

We asked teachers to send us photos and videos of their students celebrating the awards ceremony. For a guaranteed smile, we recommend watching this video of students at Michael Faraday School in London finding out they had been awarded The Alastair Burnet Award – a special award given to one exceptional school.

The Burnet News Club has been the Foundation’s core programme for the last eight years and is delivered in over 100 state schools across the UK. Throughout an academic year, students explore six global news stories during hour-long weekly classroom sessions. Between classroom sessions, students join online discussions on our Student Hub. This year, students have explored topics ranging from the American election to protest, to cancel culture.

“We love being part of the Burnet News Club. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed our children being fully immersed in topical news content. They don’t access the news that much at home, so it’s brilliant that they can do that in school and be part of the club and discuss the news in an open forum and share ideas. They can go against each other’s opinions and challenge each other in a safe space.”

Jonny Horsley, Deputy Head, Beverley St Nicholas Primary School

The annual awards ceremony was a chance to celebrate the successes of students, teachers and schools taking part in the club in what has been a challenging and disrupted year in schools. We had more awards than ever with categories honouring work, students, teachers, schools and volunteers! Many Burnet News Clubs stayed after school and celebrated in their classrooms.

Watch highlights from the ceremony here.

Our work would not be possible without the volunteers at The Economist who dedicate the time towards helping us create our teaching resources and engaging with students on our online Hub. But the awards were a chance to give a special thanks to the teachers and students who are so dedicated to making high-quality discussions about the news a normal part of growing up.

“I am in awe of what teachers and students accomplish in Burnet News Club schools every year, but particularly this year. We know the challenges that you faced every day this year just to keep the learning happening and in the face of that, you have continued to have thoughtful, lively, creative and well-reasoned discussions about the issues that are changing our world.”

Emily Evans, CEO, The Economist Educational Foundation

This year’s ceremony was especially memorable for our team because it marks the end of the Burnet News Club. From September, we’re launching a new flagship programme, Topical Talk! We’re keeping the inspiring current affairs resources and online discussions from the Burnet News Club, but making them available to a global audience.