Review of our first Schools Forum event of 2013

13 February 2013

On Thursday 7 February A New Direction hosted its Schools Forum event: Effective Partnership Working.

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We were delighted to welcome 35 teachers and Local Authority representatives, along with 14 arts and cultural organisations, to the East Room at Tate Modern.

The scene for the half-day session was set first of all by short presentations from colleagues from Tate, The Roundhouse, Sadler's Wells and Apples and Snakes, each outlining how they work in partnership with schools.

We were also delighted to welcome Nikki Haydon, Community Partnerships and Extended Schools Co-ordinator from Haverstock School in Camden, who spoke about her school's experience of working in partnership with the Roundhouse and the positive impact it has had on pupils and the school community.

Taking our inspiration from these presentations and from the spectacular view of London, we settled down to discuss the elements that can contribute to a successful partnership:

  • Benefits of partnership working
  • Establishing project goals
  • Selecting creative practitioners
  • Developing the project idea
  • Nurturing the partnership
  • Ensuring the sustainability of creative achievement

These themes have emerged from recent research carried out by A New Direction's Sarah Davies, and the resulting publication 'Creative Schools London: Six Stories of Creativity and Partnership', which can be downloaded here.

The range of experience and expertise in the room from schools and organisations alike was, itself, inspiring.

I'm still working my way through all the notes – watch this space for a resource covering the above themes coming soon! – but what was overwhelmingly clear was that both schools and arts/cultural organisations really value partnerships, working together to tailor work to the specific needs of the school and its pupils, and creating something long term that can be of mutual benefit. And that schools are keen to find out what opportunities there are to forge new partnerships and find new ways of engaging and inspiring their students and their staff.

You can find an attendee list of the event here.

Download A New Direction Schools Forum attendees (68.61 kB MSWord)

We'll be running another Forum event on 16 May – we hope to see you there!