Leading the Arts in Your School - A Teacher's View

A Teacher’s View of Leading the Arts

Artsmark: Latest Schools Announced
September 5, 2019
A Sterling Outcome
October 9, 2019

Naomi Lord is Director of Creative Learning and Partnerships at The Bolton School.

Here she blogs about her experiences on our Leading the Arts in Your School CPD, the impact its had for her personally, as well as in the classroom and across her school.

The beauty of the Leading the Arts in Your School course is that it provides an oasis of time and enriching content: necessary circumstance for creative thinking about creative development. In the incredibly busy world of schools - in my particular case, schools and performing arts - time is gold dust. Facilitated time to support creative goals is rarer still.

However, I’m pleased to see that this is changing. Courses like Leading the Arts are integral in growing the space and time for creative and cultural learning, as well as its status.

Over the time I spent doing this course, and the first phase of Artsmark development in my setting, my role grew organically to become Director of Creative Learning and Partnerships. I remain Director of Drama and a teacher of English too. The course helped me to identify purpose and ambition in my work. It enabled me to articulate school and community based ambitions for arts and culture to my senior managers.

Other new arts roles (including Arts Award co-ordinators and mentors) have been established in school since. These colleagues have also gone on to take the Leading the Arts in Your School course too, ensuring quality and a breadth of staff capability and ambition as we grow our arts provision in school, as well as our partnership work with local, regional and national schools and organisations.

The Leading the Arts in your School CPD gave structure to my identification of priorities and supported me to conceptualise change in my setting. It taught me management styles and helped me develop and implement an action plan. The modular nature of the course allowed me to journey through both initial goals and new ambitions, as I gained confidence.

Each of the workshops with Curious Minds was packed with a wonderful range of expertise. The course leaders deliver with huge enthusiasm and provide aspirational standards for arts education, as well as a clear sense of purpose to bring together the education and culture sectors in partnership. It was also a much needed opportunity to connect with other school practitioners and learn from their experiences.

The impact of the course on my personal practice has been remarkable. The knock on impact on arts delivery and opportunities for children in our setting is also significant. We are proud to be an Artsmark Platinum school. We deliver Arts Award at Bronze, Silver and Gold level; our Year 7s carry out Bronze personal projects and Silver and Gold projects are embedded into our Sixth Form enrichment programme. We have strong partnerships with a range of local cultural organisations and are currently working on outdoor arts curriculum with key partners.

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