Why Artsmark Celebration Week Matters

Published on: 
8 Oct 2018

Our Chief Executive Darren Henley tells us why schools, education settings and cultural organisations across the country are taking time to appreciate the benefits of cultural education this week.

From 8 to 12 October schools across the country will be celebrating cultural education as part of Artsmark Celebration Week.  There are currently 3737 registered Artsmark schools and education settings across the country, 849 of whom have achieved their prestigious Artsmark Award. We want to congratulate each of them for their dedication, hard work and forward-thinking approaches to cultural education and delivering the highest standards of education for our children and young people.

Whether it’s the confidence boost that comes from being on stage, the health and wellbeing benefits that having an outlet for expression can bring, or the career paths that creative skills can open up, we know that the benefits of arts education are huge.  All children deserve this, and for that to happen, cultural education needs to have a place in every school.  That's why Artsmark is so important.

The Artsmark programme supports education settings to make creativity a core pillar of their work.  Through the Artsmark Partnership Programme we're also encouraging settings to form links with organisations across England, making sure as many children as possible have access to the best arts and culture the country has to offer.  This week we want to celebrate the ways that weaving arts throughout the curriculum enriches a child’s life both inside and outside of education.

Every day, Artsmark settings are finding new ways to make creativity a part of children’s lives.  Of course, that means they encourage young people to play music, paint and perform, but they extend creativity so much further than that.  We hear stories of children taking part at every stage of the creative process – as well as acting, they design the sets, light the stage and create the costumes.  In music lessons, they write the songs and engineer recording sessions.  And creativity isn’t confined to cultural subjects – we hear about dance being used to teach maths and that role play is an excellent tool for teaching English and history.

We want to promote these stories as far and wide as possible.  At the Arts Council we'll always keep shouting about the benefits of Artsmark and cultural education, but we want the conversation to include everyone whose lives are touched by the arts.  Whether that's children, teachers, parents or the wider community, everyone can get involved with Artsmark Celebration Week.  Whether it's hosting celebration events, setting aside extra time for creativity, or getting everyone involved in school-wide arts projects, we know schools, education settings and cultural organisations across the country will be doing fantastic work this week.  Whatever you're doing, we want to hear about it – tell us on social media using the #CelebrateArtsmark hashtag.

Darren Henley

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Cultural education gives children and young people the opportunity to develop their creativity, both individually and collectively, and that's why our goal is for every child and young person to have the opportunity to experience the richness of the arts.

Darren Henley
Chief Executive
Arts Council England

It's vital that children have the opportunity to learn and enjoy arts and culture from an early age. It develops their creativity, inspires future careers and enriches their childhood.

Artsmark Award does brilliant work in schools and education to ensure young people access a broad and balanced curriculum that includes high-quality arts and culture.

Michael Ellis MP
Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism
Department of Culture, Media and Sport