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Different cultural learning strategies to be assessed in English schools

11/01/2017 Joanna

The impact of different cultural learning strategies in English schools and early-years settings is to be evaluated in a new £2.5 million project.

Conducted in partnership between the Education Endowment Foundation and the Royal Society of Arts, the Arts Council England-backed programme will look at a selection of cultural learning approaches to find out which are most likely to have a positive impact on academic attainment, as well as variables such as resilience, self-confidence and creativity.

Activities will include opportunities to visit venues, see performances and exhibitions, as well as learning through practical activity. The trials will be particularly focused on areas in England where deprivation is high and arts participation is low.

This follows a recent review by the Education Endowment Foundation that found there was limited high-quality research into the impact different arts approaches have on pupil outcomes. Given that schools are becoming increasingly accountable for the impact of their spending decisions on pupil attainment, the need for a keen understanding of the relative benefits of different approaches and strategies is becoming more pronounced.

Arts and cultural organisations, schools, universities and other non-profit organisations can all apply for a share of the funding, with the initial call for projects set to close on February 15th.

Sir Kevan Collins, chief executive of the Education Endowment Foundation, said: "All children, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds, deserve a well-rounded and culturally rich education.

"But for schools to be able to commit time and resources to arts activities, it's important that they have access to high-quality evidence of the relative benefits of different arts programmes and approaches, both on attainment and wider outcomes."

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