Abbeyleix South National School

Scoil Náisiúnta Mainistir Laoise Theas

Creative Schools

Creative Schools is a pilot run by the Arts Council of Ireland. The project aims to put the arts and creativity at the heart of children’s and young people’s lives. A practice that is hugely prevalent in our school. Only 150 schools in the country are successful in being accepted to the programme. Selected schools receive a package of support in the school year including an award of €2,000 and a Creative Associate who will work with the school to develop and begin implementing their own Creative School Plan. Applications were opened for submissions in February 2019 and our team of dedicated teachers got to work on our proposal meeting as often as possible after school to draw up our application. In March our application was ready to submit.

We highlighted that creative subjects provide our students with an opportunity to shine. Out dream was to take our students to the next level in the creative arts, where we could build on the strong creative foundation we had already established. Music and dance bring much enjoyment as we perform as a whole school for events. We sought guidance in how to encourage and support our creative writing students to be able to publish their work. Our new sensory space in the school will also hopefully be used to its full potential. Our ultimate aim in our application would be to include children, parents and the wider community in any creative initiative we undertake.

We had to show how the voices of children and young people are at the centre of our work as a Creative School. We mentioned how we use the Lundy Model where children are invited to participate verbally. All activities will be child centred and led. We will create a Creative Schools Committee. We asked the children for their input and they suggested the senior classes could teach Art/Drama to junior students. A creative box for placing your ideas for upcoming lessons was also suggested.

Before the end of the last school year we were advised that we were one of the successful schools, but we held on to this outstanding news to start our new school year 2019 – 2020 with a huge positive bang.