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Professor David Olusoga to present lockdown learning video lesson

02 Feb 2021

Professor of Public History and presenter of BBC's A House Through Time David Olusoga OBE will present a lesson on YouTube on Thursday, 4 February

Professor David Olusoga

Professor Olusoga's video lesson, Equality, representation and the census, part of the Census 2021 Let's Count primary school programme, will be livestreamed on the Census 2021 YouTube channel at 11am.

Pupils in lockdown will be able to watch Professor Olusoga explaining the importance of the census to historians - ahead of the national census in March - and looking at how it can reveal changes of populations and hidden stories.

In an interview with BBC News Family and Education, the TV historian reveals a surprising insight from his own childhood - that the ex-England footballer Paul Gascoigne defended David and his sister from racist bullying at a primary school in Gateshead. He goes on to talk more widely about racism in sport, in particular the recent racist abuse that Manchester United player Marcus Rashford has experienced on social media.

His lesson about the census, made with the Office for National Statistics, is about the "lascars", sailors recruited from Asia to work on British ships, who often faced tough conditions for lower pay than their white counterparts. 

He says studying the British empire, in its strengths and weaknesses, is "absolutely critical" to understanding present-day Britain - in terms of the "economy, culture, cuisine, as well the people who are living here".