Census 2021 – It’s Our Story Competition

Young people in schools in England and Wales are getting an exciting opportunity to have their work made part of the official public record at the National Archives as part of the Census 2021 – It’s Our Story Competition.

The census is a survey that happens every 10 years and the next Census Day is Sunday 21 March 2021. The information gathered in the census will help government, businesses and charities plan and fund services in local areas, including schools, healthcare and housing.

Monochrome print of an illustration of a man in a top hat walking down the street. He is surrounded by childen, raising his hand at them, and watched by women and children in the doorways. Text underneath the illustrations says "The enumerator endures some chaff". To the right is an illustration of a woman in glasses holding a long, thin cigar to her mouth. A cat lies on the armchair behind her. Underneath is the text "The lady of uncertain age". Underneath both illustrations are the words "Taking the census: experiences of an enumerator".

Experiences of a Census enumerator, 1891, in Illustrated London News. ZPER 34/98

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has launched the Census Secondary Education Programme to engage young people aged 11 to 18 years with the census. As well as staying connected by working together, they will explore the importance of data and statistics, and find out what they can tell us about our society.

Over the next few months in school, students will be introduced to the curriculum-linked programme, which is flexibly designed to work in the classroom and at home, and will be asked to create a campaign that encourages their community to take part in the census. This campaign will be part of a nation-wide schools’ competition where students will have the opportunity to win some amazing prizes, including:

  • The chance to be included and preserved in a public catalogue of winning entries at the National Archives.
  • An online Q and A with Gogglebox star and TikTok celebrity Tom Malone, ambassador for the Census Secondary Education Programme.
  • £1,000 of IT equipment vouchers for the school.

Find details on how to enter here. All entries must be submitted by 26 March 2021.

Document in image banner: Census entry for crew of HMS Beagle, 1861. RG 9/1085
Submit your entry