the Arts & Education Network

We are one of four regional networks funded by the Arts Council of Wales in partnership with Welsh Government. We support schools and cultural organisations in South East Wales, covering the counties Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen.

Our aim is to bring together schools, artists and cultural organisations to support best practice learning.

The objective of our model is to actively direct schools into cultural organisations to work with artists and creative practitioners thus providing learners with experiences for exploring and resources for responding. This model fully supports the statements of what matters in the Expressive Arts Area of Learning Experience.

Our model actively enables the Four Purposes, integral to the Curriculum for Wales, encouraging a humanities based curriculum and creative learning pedagogy. Read the Curriculum for Wales here.

By focusing on cultural organisations, our model aims to increase visitor figures and, more importantly, develop deeper relationships between schools and cultural organisations, build communities of artists and deepen engagement with the local community.

Our work has three strands:

Our professional development events focus on contemporary art practice and historic arts and culture to equip expressive arts teachers with confidence to present and respond to the professional practice of artists and creative practitioners. All workshops present a transferable framework, relevant for use in local galleries, theatres, museums, archives, arts centres and heritage sites while promoting the use of digital learning resources.

Our Arts Champion programme provides a team of arts practitioners who are knowledgeable in the curriculum and represent all expressive arts disciplines. Our Arts Champions visit schools and cultural venues to provide professional mentoring and support to expressive arts teachers working in state funded schools.

Our work with artists and schools to broker relationships between schools, artists practicing in all expressive arts disciplines and cultural organisations, enables learners to experience and respond to contemporary culture. The long term aim of this commitment to cultural democracy is to increase visitor figures and depth of engagement with cultural heritage.