Our school holds Artsmark platinum status, which recognises outstanding provision in the creative Arts and a whole school commitment to the creative development of young people. Artsmark platinum status is awarded by the Arts council of England. As an Artsmark school we are committed to making our school a hub of Arts excellence in our community and a leading school in our academy trust. When applying for Artsmark platinum status, we committed to four key principles in our creative education. The key principles are:
- Communication and expression: through the work undertaken in our curriculum and the broad range of Arts activities available, students are able to develop their ability to express their thoughts, ideas and feelings through different media and approaches, including the development of personal visual language. Students are able to learn to thoughtfully interpret the meaning behind the ideas and thoughts of others, and to respect their value.
- Cultural understanding and cohesion: by engaging with the work of others and developing an understanding of their meaning, students are able to improve their understanding of other cultures and consider issues that affect others, thus broadening their viewpoint. By working collaboratively to create performances and exhibitions, students learn tolerance and teamwork skills.
- Questioning and thinking about alternative ideas: through their work in the Arts, students are encouraged to consider alternative approaches to problem solving, different approaches to idea development and a willingness to accept alternatives. Students learn to question the meaning behind the work of others and what they may be trying to express.
- Challenging conceptions: through their work, students are encouraged to question core concepts and adopt a flexible and innovative mind-set in their approach to learning. This is a transferable skill which will benefit them across and beyond the school.
Artsmark platinum status also provides us with the opportunity to access external resources such as visiting Artists, programs of Arts activities and partnerships with Arts providers, which we will deploy to enhance the access of our students to a wider range of experiences. Our school has active links with Gainsborough house in Sudbury, with whom we run workshops connecting our students with the work of Thomas Gainsborough and enhancing their knowledge of his roots in the local area.