Edinburgh and Lothians Schools Film Competition is a partnership between Screen Education Edinburgh, Edinburgh International Film Festival and Arts & Creative Learning, City of Edinburgh Council that first began in 2008.

Open to all nursery, primary, secondary and special schools in Edinburgh, East, West and Midlothian, we're delighted to announce that the competition is returning in an online format for 2021, with entries open now!

The unique aspect of this project is the core role of a panel of judges made up of young people studying at Edinburgh and Lothians schools, who work with SEE and EIFF to learn about short film watching, understanding and curation to select the films and decide on the awards in each category for both screenings that take place at EIFF – a nursery/primary and a secondary/special schools screening. The jury also present the films and awards at each screening.

Edinburgh and Lothians Schools Competition 2021

The Edinburgh and Lothians Schools Competition will run online this year. Nursery, Primary, Secondary, and Special schools in Edinburgh and the Lothians that have made films over the last two years are eligible to apply and can enter as many films into the competition as they like.

Films will be judged by a Youth Jury who will decide categories, nominees, and winners.

Update**The competition will be aired on our Youtube channel on 22nd August, 12-2pm. We will post the link here as well as on our social media platforms, so watch this space!
More details of the online event will be announced in due course, for now please get submitting those entries!

Want to find out more? Download our Frequently Asked Questions here:FAQ ELSFC.pdf


Films that do not meet BBFC's U certificate guidelines cannot be screened as part of the event. Please ensure films submitted adhere to this family friendly certification. An overview of U certification can be found here.

Note: Release forms are required from all young filmmakers. This is an online form that allows us permissions to be able to publicly screen films involving young people. Each school is required to obtain a release form from each pupil involved before submitting their film. If we do not have clearance forms for all young people we cannot enter the film into the competition. The form is for parents/guardians to complete. A headed letter for teachers to issue out to parents with more information can be downloaded here: Parents ELSFC.pdf

The online release form for parents can be found here.

Youth Jury

Being part of the Youth Jury is a great opportunity to learn about film watching, judging, and curation. You will be part of a team of young people who will watch film submissions from nurseries and schools across Edinburgh and the Lothians, you will shape the categories for each award and decide on the nominees and winners. You will also present the event, which will go out online this year as part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival.
Submissions and Youth Jury Applications for this year's competition are now closed, however, if you still need to submit a release form you can do so as indicated above.
For any enquiries please contact [email protected].