Anyone who says that their school hasn't got a problem is lying

on Monday, 02 February 2015. Posted in N21 Community



Strong words?  


As a North London teacher, with over 25 years experience in schools. I know this to be the case. My name is Alan Spence and I set up Theatre is Real Life to help schools and their pupils & parents to address difficult issues, in a safe environment, through the medium of drama, using language that young people can understand.


Cyber bullying and the sexing of digital communications, is a problem which has featured widely in the media, often as a result of personal incidents of young people being driven to self harm and even suicide by abuse online. 


I am launching 'My Name is Tom, a project which explores these problems with schools on February 10th 2015, which has been designated Safer Internet Day. This is a global initiative is intended to "help promote the safe, responsible and positive use of digital technology for children and young people".


This will entail running assemblies and drama workshops, encouraging young people to talk frankly about their own experiences and those of their friends and peers. Pupils will enact schemes from a play which I have written specifically to highlight the problem and take part in 'television – styled live discussion' with experts, teenagers and their parents responding to key questions and issues. This will be reinforced with downloadable material which teachers, parents and students will have access to.


It is vital that parents are involved in sensitive projects of this nature; as they are the ones who are in a position to spot whether their son or daughter is showing signs of stress as a result of online pressure; although this can manifest itself in lots of different ways. We are conscious that our pupils come from different cultural backgrounds and some are in single se xand faith schools, so we try to build this into the way the material is presented. 


The play, My Name is Tom is being performed at the Dugdale Centre in Enfield in September 2015, so will be available to a wider audience. Booking details will be available on the Dugdale Website and closer to the performance dates.


We hope that My Name is Tom will stimulate debate about the scale of the problem and help young people make educated decisions and encourage adults to keep an open mind, so we can provide support to young people, adults and schools.


Teenagers' lost in their mobile phones and social networks, while parents' play, catch up.

When Paris and Darnell are exposed, they are not the only ones.

Paris: Would you rather stay a virgin?

Darnell: I may as well be.

Paris: Did it not mean anything at all?




If you would like to know more about the project please get in contact:

Mob: 07535 737247.

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

My Name is Tom is an education project which explores the problems of e-safety and the many issues surrounding new media

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