Sacred Heart Catholic High School celebrates platinum Artsmark status

21 September 2016

Sacred Heart Catholic High School celebrates platinum Artsmark status

Sacred Heart Catholic High School

Sacred Heart Catholic High School in Newcastle has been awarded the prestigious platinum Artsmark Award by Arts Council England. It is the first secondary school to achieve this status in the region and one of only two schools in the North East to be awarded platinum level.

Artsmark is the award for schools which protects and supports arts in education settings helping to unlock the potential of children and young people, to develop character and talent, and increase knowledge and understanding.

Suzanne Howell, Deputy Headteacher, explains: “We are very proud to receive the platinum Artsmark award, the highest arts accolade. As the first secondary school in the North East to achieve platinum status, it is most pleasing that Sacred Heart Catholic High School has been recognised as a regional leading light for our work in the arts.

“This is testament to our amazing students and staff who go above and beyond in so many areas of our school. Our students have the passion, drive and desire to allow their teachers to unlock their potential, and our staff, work tirelessly to develop students’ character and talent, ensuring all benefit from our high quality arts provision. Platinum status rewards the fact that we constantly deliver excellence and plan new and exciting ways to increase our arts offer, in a current climate where some arts subjects are being squeezed out of the curriculum in other schools.”

There are now 164 north east schools registered for Artsmark. Culture Bridge North East and The Forge work together to deliver the Artsmark programme in the region. This includes development days to introduce the process, which have included lots of activities to help schools showcase the great things they’re doing already, and then identify areas for improvement.

Helen Green, Area Manager, Culture Bridge North East says: “We are absolutely thrilled Sacred Heart received their Platinum Artsmark Award. We are lucky to have such a fantastic arts and cultural scene here in the North East and the number of Artsmark registrations demonstrates that this is valued by our schools. We are delighted that so many school leaders are recognising the prestige of this award and the intrinsic importance it has in supporting an arts focussed curriculum.”

Tony Harrington, Executive Director, The Forge, is also delighted with the news: “All Artsmark schools are committed to giving their pupils real opportunities to engage with the arts throughout their school careers and Sacred Heart’s well-deserved platinum award reflects the richness, range and quality of their arts provision. The Forge is pleased to have supported them on their exemplary Artsmark journey.”

Many schools, like Sacred Heart were new to the award: “Throughout our Artsmark journey, we have continued to develop our already strong relationships with a range of companies like Northern Stage, Theatre Royal Newcastle and the Royal Shakespeare Company. We are proud of our association with these professionals and hope that our new platinum status will further strengthen our links with the best in the business and allow us to continue to share our practice with partner schools and beyond.” says, Deputy Headteacher, Suzanne Howell.

Find out more about Artsmark and how Culture Bridge North East can work with you to achieve it.