School Swap aims to bring together students from neighbouring areas of East London in one, neutral place encouraging natural and meaningful integration to break down stereotypes and prejudice.
School Swap is a young-person led 5-part programme that will endeavour to tackle some of the root causes of the UK riots by breaking down barriers, conquering the postcode wars of East London and fostering meaningful integration amongst adjacent communities. Aimed at 14-15 year-old students, a group of six students will be selected from three different schools from the Boroughs of Newham and Hackney to participate in the programme. School Swap will provide a service that helps students develop mutual relationships and meaningful integration which will evoke a sense of nationhood and community by building positive and harmonious relations between students of different areas in East London.
They hope their uniquely designed programme will get rid of the ‘top-down’ approach that hinders meaningful integration and allow it to come about naturally from the students themselves.
By developing themes of aspiration and cohesion within our programme, students will naturally find themselves integrating with other students who have the same aspirations, values and likes as those around them.
The group met with their local MP and he is keen to collaborate on the project. The Osmani Trust, a youth and community organisation in Tower Hamlets and Newham, is working with School Swap and offering them venues for their sessions. They are also in talks with the Pears Foundation and have already set up a meeting with the Deputy Director in August 2012. They aim to impact 100 young people in the next academic year.