The Arts Council of Wales has published the 2018-19 annual report for its ground-breaking Creative learning through the arts programme. The report outlines the programme’s vital statistics, gives a voice to pupils, teachers, and artists, and explores the very real differences that this programme continues to make across Wales' education and arts landscape.

Some key figures for the 2018-19 academic year include:

  • Over 4,000 opportunities for teachers to engage with professional development
  • 319 Go and See grants awarded
  • Over 119,000 opportunities for learners to participate in the programme
  • 1,188 schools have taken part (79% of the schools in Wales)

Welsh Government Minister for Education, Kirsty Williams, said:

“It has been of tremendous benefit that Creative learning through the arts has run in parallel with the Welsh Government’s intensive education reform agenda, and I cannot emphasise highly enough the vital contribution made by this provision, and more generally by the Arts Council of Wales, to the development of our new curriculum.”

Diane Hebb, Director of Arts Engagement, Arts Council of Wales, said:

Headteachers are telling us that this programme is helping them prepare for the new curriculum and that they're now applying new methods to school planning and curriculum design. They're sharing their creative habits across the whole school in order to put creativity at the heart of learning.

The annual report includes maps that shows programme activity in each area. There are several case studies and quotes from participants. One Lead Creative School teacher said when asked about the benefits of participating in the programme:

“I don't think I would have felt so passionate about it if we hadn't engaged in the Lead Creative Schools process. It has been a wonderful experience both for our school and for me personally.”

It was announced in April that the Creative learning through the arts programme will be extended until March 2022.