Today is officially day one of full time work on the Livingstone Academy East London. In reality a number of us in the core team have not stopped thinking about the project since the bid was approved and LA East given the green light back in March 2016 despite existing commitments. Livingstone Academy East London is a remarkably exciting project to be involved in.

The school has an ambitious vision to deliver not only excellent academic results but also provide authentic experiences that develop the skills essential for young people from Tower Hamlets to succeed in a new digital age. Inspired by the success of projects such as the Digital Schoolhouse and inspiring new schools such as School 21 in London andQuest to Learn NYC, we believe the vision set out in the bid of a school focused on computing, creativity andentrepreneurship is not only possible but absolutely necessary if children are to unlock the opportunities of the future.


  • A*s are not enough – Excellent GCSE results are necessary but no longer sufficient for long-term success in a globally competitive economy and digital age.
  • Digital skills and creativity are vital – The more creative and digital businesses I speak to the more I realise that if our young people are able to think creatively and be digital makers they will be our future leaders and successful entrepreneurs.
  • School should be engaging – Many students find school boring and do not understand the relevance or purpose of what they are learning in the classroom. This is not how it has to be!
  • School can be different – An increasing number of organisations and schools worldwide are providing opportunities for students to succeed in exams and engage in authentic, deep and relevant learning that develops the skills essential for success in the modern world. I truly believe it is possible to do both and we must if the young people leaving us are to be in any way ready for what is on the horizon.

So far we have been busy with every spare second we have discussing curriculum plans, liaising with partners in the community and thinking deeply about how we can make Livingstone Academy East London a school that breaks boundaries, delivers academic excellence and sends every child into the world beyond school with the character attributes, skills and qualifications to lead and shape the future.

This is such an incredibly exciting project and promises to be quite a journey. Our news feed will feature regular updates from us. Parents, students, interested educators and school leaders you can all check in and see how things are progressing. We hope you enjoy accompanying us this year on the road to opening.

Tom Stephens 

Senior Leader – Livingstone Academy East London