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Home Secretary Theresa May visited Altwood Church of England Secondary School in Maidenhead recently to talk to students about the educational power of cinema, paying close attention to two recent British films.
Members of Altwood's Into Film Club and media students took part in a Q&A after watching The Iron Lady, Phyllida Lloyd's biopic on Margaret Thatcher, and Made In Dagenham, which tells the true story of a group of female factory workers who went on strike demanding equal pay in 1968.
Parliament Week last year, which looked at women in democracy and also featured fascinating documentary Sisters In Law and Pixar's recent Highland fairytale, Brave. All films chosen had at their core narratives that reflected challenges faced by women in politics today, and proved an excellent starting point for further political discussion.
Speaking about the resource, May said she was delighted students at Altwood had been considering women's role in democracy, saying; "this shows the value of film in introducing young people to important events from our history."
Kathy Jackman, Deputy Headteacher at Altwood, echoed the Home Secretary's sentiments on the usefulness of film as a tool for teaching: "I think film is a medium that schools should use a lot more. For students, it can be quite life changing if they watch something that's very powerful."
Film can play a vital role in the education and development of young people.Theresa May MP