Being well-versed and invested in the positive impact that immersion into the creative arts can have at all levels of personal and academic development, we are excited to see that the Burberry Foundation and Ideas Foundation are launching an extensive in-school arts and culture programme, involving eight high schools across Yorkshire. Working in collaboration with Leeds Playhouse, Leeds Young Film, Northern Ballet and The Hepworth Wakefield, each cultural organisation will deliver an in-school artist in residence giving Key Stage 3 students (11-14 years) a wide-ranging, hands-on experience of different areas in the arts. The artist in residence will seek to co-create events with the schools to broaden their reach across the schools’ local communities.
From filmmaking workshops run by Leeds Young Film to creative dance with Northern Ballet and everything from print making to sculpture with The Hepworth Wakefield, the projects all look to increase confidence, broad-thinking and communication skills. “At Burberry, we believe that creativity should be nurtured, and we are passionate about championing the benefits of making arts and culture available to all. We want to inspire young people across the country to explore the wide variety of ways they can be involved in the creative industries, and help to create a wealth of talent for one of Britain’s most important sectors,” says Leanne Wood, a trustee of The Burberry Foundation.
The impact of the programme itself will be measured over its four years duration by the Policy Institute at King’s College London, who will examine how cultural and creative education can help young people to overcome challenging circumstances, widen their horizons and realise their aspirations. “The Policy Institute is delighted to be involved in this initiative. Too many cultural and educational programmes are introduced without being adequately evaluated, so we’re thrilled that the Burberry Foundation has set out to rigorously analyse the impact of this project from the get-go. Doing these kinds of evaluations, rather than relying on anecdotes, is how we come to know how what actually works, and gives us the best chance of making a difference to young people’s lives,” says Dr Benedikt Wilson.
The programme has been developed in collaboration with Ideas Foundation, a registered charity who help to move the creative, tech and communications industry in a more diverse direction. “We believe creativity doesn’t have a class, but is should have a classroom,” says Heather MacRae, the charity’s MD. “By bringing creativity into schools we are delivering experiences that will inspire young people and give them an insight into future careers in the creative industries.”
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