I listened to a radio debate about arts education in England on Radio 4 last month.
The pained discussion about creativity being a key skill in the economy of the future, and young people needing to be adaptable in a rapidly changing jobs market, didn’t reflect well on the English approach.
Now I’m not writing to compound that criticism on our dear neighbour, but the contrast with our own approach couldn’t have been clearer. For me the debate could have been a celebration of where we’re heading with the new curriculum for Wales.
We’re building a real-world curriculum which will help our young people grow in the expressive arts. They’ll be learning through experiences, gaining skills, taking on knowledge, led by a profession with more freedom to adapt their approach to suit pupils’ needs than they’ve had for 30 years.
And that’s right across the curriculum, not just in expressive arts.
Yes there will be some re-learning and updating for us all as educational practitioners, but I feel that the benefits for our learners – and ourselves – will fully and absolutely justify that investment.
Thank you for your hard work and commitment in 2018. Have a wonderful Christmas and a relaxing break.
Steve Davies, Director, Education Directorate, Welsh Government.