Policy and Practice Round-up June 2014

27 June 2014

News from Westminster

Ahead of the May 2015 general election the process of developing party manifestos is forging ahead. June saw a key speech from Harriet Harman, Deputy Leader of the Labour party and the launch of a consultation on young people and the arts.

Also in June Sajid Javid, Culture Secretary, gave his first keynote on the subject of arts and culture, and the Policy Exchange hosted a one-day event that included Michael Gove and Tristram Hunt setting out their party’s plans for education.

  • Labour consultation on Young People and the Arts

Harriet Harman launched Labour’s consultation on Young People and the Arts at the Roundhouse on the 9 June to a packed audience. Harman spoke about children’s right to arts and culture and called on the cultural sector to diversify their audiences. You can read the speech here.

The consultation seeks our views on what commitments for the arts and young people should be included in the Labour 2015 manifesto. Labour pose 19 questions starting with 'How can we ensure that every child has opportunities to experience the arts and culture with visits to cultural organisations and artists?'.

This focus on young people and the arts is very welcome and we encourage CLA members to get involved. CLA will be responding to the consultation which closes on 17 July. Details of how to respond are on page 6 of the consultation document.

  • New Culture Secretary’s first keynote speech on culture

Sajid Javid, who was appointed Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport in April, gave his first major speech on culture on 6 June. He called on the cultural sector to do more to make the arts accessible to all, saying too many people were culturally disenfranchised.

Javid also spoke about arts education and gave the impression that it was thriving in schools, something the CLA would take issue with - see the data on the falls in number of arts teachers and hours of arts teaching here.

Read comparisons of the two speeches from the Museum Association and Classical Music, and also the BBC on Javid and Harman's speeches.

  • Gove and Hunt education speeches

On the weekend between Javid’s and Harman’s speeches, the Policy Exchange hosted 'What should the political parties promise on education in 2015?', which included keynotes from Michael Gove and Tristram Hunt, the Education Secretary and Labour Shadow respectively.

The speeches can be viewed here.

Gove majored on autonomy, accountability and teacher quality in his speech with some hints of new measures on behaviour and the suggestion that there would be more GCSE reforms after the election.

Hunt confirmed that Labour would not be seeking to overturn all the recent reforms to allow schools some breathing space - something he also stated in his interview with the TES on 6 June. He spoke about the importance of qualified teachers, extending academy freedoms to all schools, and the Directors of School standards covered in David Blunkett's review, 'Putting Students and Parents First', which we covered in our May policy and practice round up.

You can read the reaction to the speeches on the RSA and TES blogs.

Discount code watch – more good news!

Following on from the changes in GCSE Discount Codes in February which mean that Dance and Drama GCSEs do not discount each other in school tables, Photography has now been given its own code distinct from the other Art & Design GCSEs.

This means Photography GCSE does not discount against other Art & Design GCSEs. However disciplines as diverse as ceramics and textiles still do. Alongside NSEAD, the CLA continues to call for all art, craft and design GCSEs to have unique codes.

Make sure your school knows that the discount codes have changed. The full lists of the codes are available on RAISEonline.

Cultural Enquiry to investigate access to the arts for young people

King’s College London is launching a short Cultural Enquiry into the various ways in which successive governments have sought to provide children and young people with access to the arts since 1945. It will report in September and include recommendations for action. Read more here.

BFI Film Academy shortlisted for National Lottery Awards

Congratulations to the BFI Film Academy who have been shortlisted for the National Lottery Awards in the Education category.

To win they need the public vote. Do click on through, check out the projects and vote.

They also have Arts and Heritage categories you might want to take a look at.

CLA member survey

Have you told us what you think?

The CLA member survey asking what we can do for you, and what you can do for the CLA, is open until midnight on 30 June.

Huge thanks to the hundreds of you who have already responded. If you haven't yet done so, please do click here and answer our nine questions.

We will report on the results and actions after the summer.