We at IVE are delighted to have the opportunity to work in partnership with Create Sheffield to enable thirty Sheffield-based schools and education settings to take part in an Artsmark Journey together. Artsmark is the only creative quality standard for schools and education settings, accredited by Arts Council England, open to primary, secondary and special schools, pupil referral units, youth offending teams and sixth form colleges. Together, we will support settings to develop and celebrate their commitment to arts and cultural education and creativity.
Alongside professional support, including training, advice and teaching resources, education settings will also be able to participate in a number of bespoke peer network sessions, exploring a range of themes and topics designed to strengthen provision, address challenges, inspire new ideas and develop new creative teaching strategies.
The Arts Council England's Artsmark award celebrates and supports educational settings that champion arts and culture and strive for excellence in their provision. Artsmark has been designed by schools, for schools, to align with School Improvement Plans and support key priorities, helping to create a broad, balanced and enriching curriculum.
We welcomed the thirty educational settings from Sheffield into a new Artsmark consortium and delivered the first Development Day in March. It was a brilliant day and we really enjoyed meeting one another, sharing experiences and discussing lots of exciting and innovative new ideas for everyone’s individual Artsmark journey.
However, circumstances surrounding COVID-19 and school closures has meant that we have had to review plans and consider how to keep all of our Artsmark Consortium schools connected. In addition to delivering a number of online peer support network sessions, CPD sessions and Artsmark support sessions, we will also be launching a new Microsoft Teams platform, specifically for our consortium schools. The MS Teams platform will enable our partner settings to offer support and share ideas/ resources with one another; discover local arts and cultural provision; receive regular updates regarding Artsmark; receive information about CPD sessions and other peer network support sessions available.
Sheffield is home to an incredibly rich array of Arts and Cultural organisations who offer an excellent programme of opportunities for education settings. Throughout this journey, education settings will meet with Arts and Cultural providers and share ways of working together – hopefully developing meaningful, collaborative partnerships.
We are at the very start of this exciting journey but watch this space for regular updates!