Written evidence submitted by Creativity,
Culture and Education (CCE) (arts 93)
1. Creativity, Culture and Education (CCE)
has chosen to submit evidence to the Select Committee because
we are concerned that recent and future spending cuts from central
and local Government are likely to have a disproportionate impact
on young people. This risks the long term future of young people's
engagement with the arts and cultural sector as well as having
a potentially detrimental impact on the ability of young people
from less affluent backgrounds to gain employment within the creative
industries and therefore reducing social mobility.
2. We believe young people's cultural programmes
are particularly at risk of cuts as they do not feature as a priority
for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in their
structural reform plan. Arts education funding is fragmented across
government departments and agencies, with no clear indication
on how this agenda is being joined up, which exacerbates the risk
of cuts. CCE argues that the issue of young people's access and
engagement with arts and culture merits further investigation
as it has an impact on the Committee's interest in how programmes
of work can be better joined up and coordinated.
3. To help address these issues, CCE recommends:
DCMS should accept they have a fundamental
responsibilityeven in difficult timesto ensure that
all young people have the opportunity to engage with the arts
regardless of their background.
The select committee should use this
enquiry to assess the impact of cuts on young people's cultural
CCE believes most cultural organisations
should give cultural learning a core role in their work.
Educational and cultural organisations
must ensure they prioritise those without access to cultural learning
To aid this, local authorities and regional
agencies should make cultural learning a more explicit part of
their planning for children and young people's programmes.
Cultural and learning organisations should
work together on cultural learning by building local and regional
4. CCE is a national independent arts education
charity established to support children and young people's access
to the arts and culture. We achieve this by designing and delivering
high quality cultural programmes, building a strong independent
evidence base and supporting debate among policy makers.
5. We believe all children should experience
and have access to a diverse range of arts and cultural activities
regardless of their background. This allows children to question,
make connections, innovate, problem solve, communicate, collaborate
and reflect critically, so they are much better equipped for modern
workplaces where employers view these as essential skills.
6. CCE manages Creative Partnerships, the
leading European creative learning programme designed to develop
the skills of children and young people, raising their aspirations
and achievements, and those of their teachers. It matches schools,
teachers and students with creative professionals such as artists,
architects, multimedia developers and scientists. Together they
consider the challenges the school faces and use creative thinking
to design programmes that tackle these. The school's challenge
might be low results, lack of parental engagement, or pupil motivation.
Projects are linked to the school's improvement plan to ensure
sustainability of the practice and independent research shows
Creative Partnerships can have a significant impact on reducing
truancy and improving motivation and attainment.
Why is arts education important?
7. Children who have been exposed to the
arts are far more likely to access such opportunities in adult
life, enriching the quality of their lives. In addition, ensuring
all young people have access to a wide range of cultural and artistic
experiences helps to develop their ability to think critically,
problem solve and communicate their views. This helps improve
their life chances by developing the skills they need to perform
well, not only in exams and extracurricular activities, but also
to succeed in the workplace and wider society.
8. A recent Ipsos MORI study revealed the
differences in young people's access to arts activities out of
school settings and in particular the links between a child's
access to arts and culture and the educational levels of their
parents. It found that 60 per cent of children of parents with
no educational qualifications spend less than three hours each
week on cultural activities and 20 per cent spend none at allincluding
reading a book or doing creative things on a computer (Mori 2009).
What is the evidence that our approach works?
9. Ofsted's 2010 report "Learning:
creative approaches that raise standards" recognises the
benefits of Creative Partnerships, arguing that creative learning
practices in schools are improving standards and pupils' personal
development. It noted Creative Partnerships schools have seen
"notable improvements in their levels of achievement and
in measurable aspects of personal development, such as attendance".
The impact on academic attainment and attendance
10. To date Creative Partnerships has impacted
on over one million pupils and nearly 5,000 schools across England,
from Key Stage 1 to 4. The National Foundation for Education Research
(NFER) found from a survey of 13,000 young people who have taken
part in Creative Partnerships' activities have achieved, on average,
the equivalent of 2.5 grades higher at GCSE than similar young
people in other schools. (NFER 2008)
11. The National Foundation for Education
Research also explored the impact of Creative Partnerships programmes
on attendance and found an educationally significant reduction
in truancy rates in Creative Partnerships' primary schools. It
must be stressed that finding educationally significant statistical
evidence is extremely rare, and indicates a strong probability
that the only explanation for these results is Creative Partnerships
is the cause of the observed effect. (NFER 2008)
Impact on parents
12. Another key predictor of the academic
attainment of young people is the degree to which parents are
involved in their education. The Centre for Literacy in Primary
Education (2007) found creative programmes offer low-risk invitations
to involve parents, encouraging some to engage with teachers and
the whole school. In some cases they found parents took employment
at the school as a result of initial involvement in creative projects.
13. CCE is concerned the impacts of the
cuts on arts and heritage spending both nationally and locally
will fall disproportionately on programmes targeting children
and young people, having a devastating effect on young people's
education and development. This is likely to result in a whole
generation of children and young people missing out on opportunities
to learn about arts and culture and develop their own talents.
14. Recent cuts have already illustrated
this risk, for example the abolition of DCMS programmes targeted
at children and young people including: Free swimming for under
16s; A Night Less Ordinary, which provides free theatre tickets
to young people; and the Find Your Talent pilot which encouraged
five hours of cultural learning each week.
15. We are also concerned that the DCMS
five headline departmental priorities listed in their Structural
Reform Plan (July 2010), make no reference to engaging and educating
children in culture and the arts. This leaves young people's programmes
an easy target for cuts, particularly where they may already be
seen as less important within the cultural sector as a whole.
16. We believe making disproportionate cuts
in this area is short sighted for a number of reasons:
Widening the employment divide and reducing social
17. The creative industries have already
been identified by the Government as one of the fastest growing
sectors. The CBI noted in July 2010 that the creative industries
contribute around 6-8% of UK output and produce exports totalling
£16 billion every year. It is widely expected that they will
continue to grow, generating jobs for many years to come. While
competition to enter the creative industries is fierce, it is
biased in favour of young people from more affluent backgrounds,
who are far more likely to experience culture out of school from
an early age.
18. Cutting arts and cultural educational
programmes would continue to widen the divide in employment opportunities
and future careers between those from more affluent and disadvantaged
backgrounds. Young people from less affluent backgrounds still
find it difficult to access the sector, with the Creative &
Cultural Skills Council recently highlighting the industry remains
one of the most impenetrable.
19. Alan Milburn's Fair Access to the Professions
report also highlighted this issue: "The arts and cultural
will be one of our country's major professions
in future. There is strong evidence that children who are exposed
to the arts early in life more actively engage with them when
they become adults. And yet, middleand low-income parents
wishing their children to participate in a range of cultural activities
often find there is no structure to support them in doing so"
(Milburn 2009). Reducing arts education funding risks making this
Fragmentation of the funding system
20. Responsibility for funding for young
people's initiatives in the arts and cultural sector currently
lies across a number of departments including the DCMS and the
Department for Education. In addition, individual museums, the
Arts Council, Design Council and others will all be submitting
individual plans which will include work on young people and the
arts and culture. This kind of fragmentation means there is a
danger that no-one is monitoring impact of individual cuts in
young people's work on the sector as a whole.
21. Before the election the Conservative
Party acknowledged the need for better ministerial coordination
between the Department for Education and Department for Culture,
Media and Sport. Although this may now be happening, there is
little evidence of this in the public domain or clarity for those
working in the education or cultural sector. Both departments
need to take their fair share of responsibility for addressing
this issue, so that cross departmental policy areas such as cultural
education for young people are not lost.
Evidence based decisions
22. We are concerned that DCMS departmental
cuts are not sufficiently evidence based, and fail to identify
the benefits to society that public expenditure is seeking to
achieve. This argument is backed up by the Centre for Social Justice's
recent response to the Government's Spending review framework.
It argues that the Treasury should "follow business practice
and put return on investment at the heart of its spending decisions.
It should take into account not just the financial value created
from a spending programme, but the social value as well. This
way worthwhile programmes will be expanded and ineffective ones
identified and scrapped." (Centre for Social Justice 2010)
23. The recent systematic review of the
research on learning outcomes for young people participating in
the arts from the DCMS' research team CASE aims to strengthen
understanding of how best to deliver culture and sporting opportunities
of the highest quality to the widest audience. The report highlighted
the generally positive impact of arts activities on the development
of children and young people. However it recognizes this will
not be true of every arts activity. Therefore CCE argues that
decisions about which arts education programmes continue to be
funded, should be made based on evidence of what has been proven
24. CCE is concerned there are competing
agendas at play when cuts are being made both at the national
and local level. The Big Society aims to encourage community and
citizen action to find local solutions to service delivery driven
by local concerns and preferences. This offers a great opportunity
for citizens to become more involved in shaping services and producing
innovative solutions appropriate to the area they live in. We
support this approach.
25. However, we recognise the capacity of
many communities will need to be enhanced if they are to play
a meaningful role. Our approach is intended to ensure that young
people and their families develop the skills and understanding
necessary to play a full role in defining and developing their
own solutions to their community aspirations. Cultural programmes
for young people provide a particularly potent way to ensure they
are able to articulate and devise solutions to their own problems.
Substantial reductions in funding of such programmes are likely
to put this at risk.
26. The Demos Consultation PaperCulture
and Learning: towards a New Agenda (Demos 2008), reported on research
into the views of arts funders and cultural organisations on the
provision of cultural programmes for young people. It found some
cultural organisations are ambivalent about their responsibilities
towards young people. This has organisational implications, with
those working in learning often denied senior management status.
For example, heads of learning rarely sit on senior management
teams and learning can be sidelined within another function in
27. The report found "although there
have been many positive developments and initiatives in both the
cultural and education sectors, fundamental problems remain, with
learners encountering widely differing experiences. Cultural learning
still has a low profile in public and political consciousness.
Shared standards of excellence need to be developed, and consistent
levels of provision established." (Demos 2008).
28. It recommended that the solution to
such a disjointed approach to cultural learning is to have a better
regime of evidence and evaluation and a more effective framework
for delivery. This would be aided by: better networks for cultural
educators and more brokerage. It highlights that "Creative
Partnerships is the largest and most obvious example, with a now
well-established track record and Ofsted-assessed performance.
Given the divide already noted between the education and cultural
sectors, brokerage is a very necessary function, worthy of extension
and investment" (Demos 2007)
29. CCE fears the current lack of priority
for children and young people within the DCMS' structural reform
plan may well lead to a whole generation of young people missing
out on cultural activities. We argue DCMS should accept they have
a fundamental responsibilityeven in difficult timesto
ensure all young people have the opportunity to engage with the
arts regardless of their background.
30. In this submission, CCE highlights that
close attention must be paid to monitoring the impact of individual
cuts on programmes for young people. Because funding responsibilities
often fall between several departments, there is a danger such
programmes could be dramatically affected due to lack of oversight
and cross departmental working. Given the wide range of evidence
which will be heard in this enquiry, this will be an ideal opportunity
for the committee to scrutinise this issue.
31. CCE believes most cultural organisations
should give cultural learning a core role in their work. Strong
leadership from within the cultural organisations is critical
in ensuring the learning function is properly represented at senior
management and board level. The expertise of learning teams must
also be valued and developed and the needs of children, families
and carers must be identified and addressed.
32. Without coordinated efforts to broker
relationships between cultural organisations and education providers,
and with cultural organisations facing budget cuts, support for
young people will almost disappear. With this in mind, CCE argues
that educational and cultural organisations must ensure they prioritise
those who do not otherwise have access to cultural learning opportunities.
33. To aid this, local authorities and regional
agencies should make cultural learning a more explicit part of
their planning for children and young people's programmes. In
parallel, cultural and learning organisations should aim to work
together on cultural learning by building local and regional partnerships.
(2010). Creating Growth: A blueprint for the creative industries.
London: CBI http://www.cbi.org.uk/Pdf/20100722-cbi-creative-industries-blueprint.pdf
Carr-West, J (2010) People Places Power: How Localism
and Strategic Planning Can Work Together, Local Government
Centre for Social Justice (2010) Response to the
Spending Review Framework 2010: Maximising Social Value
Centre for Literacy in Primary Education, (2007)
Their Learning Becomes Your Journey: Parents Respond to Children's
Work in Creative Partnerships'
Department for Culture Media and Sport, (July 2010)
Department for Culture Media and Sport Structural Reform Plan
Gunnell, B and Bright M (2010) Creative Survival
in Hard Times, New Deal of the Mind
Holden, J (2008) Consultation PaperCulture
and Learning: Towards a New Agenda, Demos
Ipsos Mori (2009), Evaluation of the Find Your Talent
Programme: Baseline findings from 10 Find Your Talent Pathfinders,
Milburn, Alan, (2009) Unleashing Aspiration: The
Final Report of the Panel on Fair Access to the Professions,
National Foundation for Educational Research (2008)
The longer-term impact of Creative Partnerships on the attainment
of young people: Results from 2005 and 2006
National Foundation for Educational Research (July
2008) The impact of Creative Partnerships on pupil behaviour
Ofsted (January 2010) Learning: Creative Approaches
that Raise Standards