The Young Filmmakers Challenge invites young people to produce and submit a short film based on the theme: What if “school” as we know it didn’t exist?

Winning submissions will be screened and an awards ceremony held in Washington, DC, in October 2020. The screening will be the culminating event of a three-day, city-wide celebration on Unleashing the Power of Young People. The producer of the Best Overall Film will receive $250 and, along with one guest, an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, DC.

This nationwide challenge is open to anyone 18 and under and submissions will be accepted between February 15th-May 1st. Winners will be announced on May 15th.

We all know education is about learning, right? And “school” has been an official space for learning (i.e. government-funded) since the 1920s. But, what if “school" as we know it didn’t exist?
What if you woke up each morning with the goal to “learn” by pursuing your interests, curiosities, and passions? What would your day look like? Ultimately, if you had primary ownership over the design of your education, what would learning look like for you?

Using your unbounded creativity, inventive imagination, and knowledge about yourself as a learner—and the genius that you are—this is your opportunity to share what the future of education could (and possibly should) be.

Need a little inspiration to get started? Consider these questions:

• What are you curious to know more about?
• What interests and passions would you explore?
• Where would you explore them?
• Who would you interact and engage with?
• Who would you learn from?
• Who might you teach the knowledge and skills you’re learning about?
• When would learning occur?
• Through your explorations and learnings what impact/change do you want to see in your community, the world?


Learn the ins-and-outs of filmmaking via the free Video Creator course by Mouse. To access the course, sign up for a free Spark Membership.

About Education Reimagined

A national nonprofit based in Washington, DC, Education Reimagined partners with a growing movement of visionary leaders (of all ages) who are forwarding a new future for education in their communities and across the United States. The organization aims to deepen and spread the presence of learner-centered education such that it is available to each and every child in the country, regardless of background or circumstance.

When Education Reimagined says "learner-centered education," we mean a system of education that recognizes and values young people as unique and whole human beings with the agency to chart and live out their distinct journey of learning. This system is a transformational shift away from the conventional, school-centered education system that asks young people to adapt to a standardized, one-size-fits-all approach to learning.

Jury prizes from the Education Reimagined Young Filmmakers Challenge will be awarded in the following categories:

• Best Overall Film
• Best Local Film (DC-based production, cast, and crew)
• Best International Film
• Best Director
• Best Screenplay
• Best Film, Age 14-18
• Best Film, Age 11-13
• Best Film, Under 11

The Best Overall Film winner will receive $250 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, DC for you and one guest to attend the Challenge Screening on May 3rd. All other winners will receive $100 and an invitation to attend. Honorable mentions will be awarded in each category.

The jury will be judging films on a variety of metrics but is most interested in filmmakers expressing their creativity, originality, and authenticity.

• Any narrative (live-action or animation) or documentary under 12 minutes in length, inclusive of titles and credits.
• Filmmakers allowed to submit must be 18 or under.
• Films must have been completed after January 2018 (newly or recently made films only).
• Premiere status is not required.
• While we acknowledge educators and adults may offer assistance with the creation of the films, especially for the youngest filmmakers, we do require that the film be written and directed by the student or group of students submitting their film.
• Non-English language films must have English subtitles at the time the film is submitted.
• Incomplete film submissions will not be considered for screening or awards.
• By submitting their film, filmmakers confirm that they have obtained the necessary permissions for any copyright-protected material used within the film. Education Reimagined will not be held liable where the appropriate rights or permissions have not been obtained.
• All films submitted and information about the filmmaker may be used in Education Reimagined communications, website, or other materials and/or for marketing Education Reimagined Young Filmmakers Challenge.