After the successful run of our latest national production Special Measures here are some more figures about cut backs in the arts in schools.
New figures show that the number of arts teachers in secondary schools has plummeted by 22 per cent in seven years. In plain figures, there are 2,600 fewer drama teachers, 2,100 fewer art and design teachers and 1,500 fewer music teachers than there were in 2011.*
There have been strong research studies since 2010 about relationships between arts and cultural engagement and educational attainment and later life outcomes.
These research studies concluded that learning through arts and culture improves attainment across many other aspects of the school curriculum and has a wealth of other beneficial impacts on young people, namely:
– taking part in drama and library activities improves attainment in literacy
– taking part in structured music activities improves attainment in maths, early language acquisition and early literacy
– schools that integrate arts across the curriculum in the US have shown consistently higher average reading and mathematics scores compared to similar schools that do not
– participation in structured arts activities increases cognitive abilities
– students from low income families who take part in arts activities at school are three times more likely to get a degree than children from low income families that do not engage in arts activities
– students who engage in the arts at school are twice as likely to volunteer than students who do not engage in arts and are 20 per cent more likely to vote as young adults**
*Richard Morrison – The Times
** The Arts Council Website