| They are
in the third round of schools to receive an Artsmark award in recognition
of their commitment to music, drama, dance and the visual arts,
both during and after school.
One school, Brackenbury Primary,
received the top Artsmark Gold award; two others, Melcombe and
St John's Walham Green primaries, gained Artsmark Silver while
Phoenix High School and Woodlane High School both gained Artsmark
Artsmark is a new national scheme developed by the Arts Council
of England to encourage schools to increase the range of arts
education provision and to raise the profile of arts education.
Awards are given annually at three levels - Artsmark, Artsmark
Silver and Artsmark Gold.
Andrew McMahon, headteacher of
Brackenbury Primary School, said: "At Brackenbury we believe
that the arts are a vital part of our school's curriculum. We
aim to develop our children's ability to express themselves and
provide opportunities that will enhance all aspects of their lives.
Many of these experiences will be the beginnings of lifelong pursuits."
Mr McMahon said the Artsmark Gold
was awarded in recognition of the huge amount of opportunities
provided for pupils including: after-school drama, art, music
and performing arts clubs for younger and older pupils; visits
to galleries and museums and participation in borough-wide arts
events, including the recent Dance Challenge project and the annual
Visual Arts Season.
Excellent arts provision is a strong feature of the school's curriculum.
Pupils have recently been involved in creating a ceramic tile
mural, now on display at the Kingwood City Learning Centre, and
a collection of hats, which has gone on show at Hammersmith &
Fulham's education department.
Staff and pupils at Melcombe and
St John's Walham Green primary schools have had their enthusiasm
for the arts rewarded with silver Artsmark awards.
Janet Moffat, headteacher of Melcombe Primary School, said: "We
have very strong links with the Lyric theatre and always take
part in the annual Performing Arts Week there. We are also committed
to bringing a wide variety of artists into school to work with
the children, as well as having strong links with HarperCollins,
which enables pupils to work alongside people from the publishing
Pauline Morozgalska, headteacher
of St John's Walham Green Primary School, said: "Our key
project was the big tapestry that we made for the millennium,
which every child helped to design and produce. This is still
on display in the school. In 2001 the children made clothes for
a big school fashion show and last year's arts projects culminated
in a very successful music and arts week."
Both Phoenix High School and Woodlane
High School received Artsmark awards.
Nick Holt, headteacher at Woodlane
High School, said: "We have used the arts to expand the children's
horizons beyond a small, special school environment, either by
bringing artists into the school or by getting involved in outside
exhibitions and events, including the borough's recent Art by
Young People exhibition."
William Atkinson, headteacher of
Phoenix High School, said: "I am delighted that the Arts
Council has recognised Phoenix High School's arts education programme,
which gives pupils many opportunities to develop their skills
and benefit from a quality experience of the arts. It is another
fantastic step forward for the school, and we will continue to
build on this success".
Phoenix High School works in partnership
with a number of artists. For example, students from all years
work regularly with Niles Hailestones, an African drumming teacher,
and they will be participating in the Borough's Schools Music
Festival on 24th June. Other students work regularly with DJ Emerson
Yearwood and street dance tutor, Chudi Obiora.
Peter Hewitt, Chief Executive of Arts Council England, said:
"Now in its third year, Artsmark continues to go from strength
to strength. Our belief is that the arts have the power to transform
lives, and that dynamic arts experiences offered by schools have
a lasting impact on young people. This year, we are delighted
to make the award to a further 775 schools. Artsmark celebrates
the importance of arts in education, encourages schools to review
and develop arts provision and recognises teachers for their commitment
to the arts."
Cllr David Williams, deputy for
education, said: "I am delighted that the Arts Council of
England has recognised the progressive and well-balanced arts
education taking place in our schools. Participation in arts subjects
and events helps pupils to develop their confidence, which has
an important impact on their all-round achievement.
All these awards are a great achievement but the gold award is
only given after very rigorous assessment so Brackenbury is blazing
the trail for other schools."