St Alphege CE Infant School in Whitstable becomes the first Infant School in the South East to achieve Platinum Artsmark Status!
This term St Alphege are celebrating after receiving the prestigious Platinum Artsmark Award. This is highest level awarded by Arts Council England and follows a rigorous application process. To achieve Platinum level Artsmark, St Alphege had to demonstrate embedded and exciting arts in the curriculum, extracurricular activities, working with artists and arts organisations, arts outreach work with other schools and organisations and evaluating the impact of the arts on the whole community.
This is even more significant as our children are all under the age of seven years old. Through our child centred approach and belief in the potential for each individual, we allow our children’s curiosity and imagination to have no limits.
“Before a child talks, they sing. Before they write, they draw. As soon as they stand, they dance. Art is fundamental to human expression.” P. Rashad
We were assessed against seven Quality Principles:
1. Striving for excellence and innovation
2. Being authentic
3. Being exciting, inspiring and engaging
4. Ensuring a positive and inclusive experience
5. Actively involving children and young people
6. Enabling personal progression
7. Developing belonging and ownership
Children as young as 4 years old, have the opportunity to develop leadership skills within the arts, working both in school and with our partner schools to help to deliver adventurous arts projects.
At St Alphege we have demonstrated that:
- We offer a broad balanced and creative curriculum
- Our children have the opportunity to develop character, confidence and talent and increase their knowledge, curiosity and skills.
- We are proud to be developing innovative, articulate and successful young people
- The arts are embedded in everything we do at St Alphege and the creative way that we approach our teaching and learning
- The arts are a vehicle through which our vision and values are lived out
In the last year alone, we have led on the following ambitious projects:
- We have worked alongside Animate Arts on the ambitious #Art Builders Project, which saw eight schools from across the South East come together to
- Alongside our specialist music teacher, Anita Memmott we set up an intergenerational choir, bringing together older members of our community and our Nursery children in a weekly session of music making.
- We have forged strong links with the local Playhouse Theatre, where our Year 2 Performing Arts Club, perform their self-written end of year production each year.
- Our children have displayed work at many local arts venues including: The Horsebridge, The Turner and The Beaney ensuring that our very youngest artists have a public forum to display their work.
- We hosted 180 children from local schools in a morning of singing.
Darren Henley, Chief Executive of Arts Council England stated that: “St Alphege is a shining example of outstanding creative arts provision. You have developed a rich, inspiring, broad and balanced curriculum that offers your pupils the opportunity to explore and build a love of the arts that will remain with them throughout their adult life.”
Head of School: Jacqui Spinks stated that: “The arts is a fundamental part of the curriculum at St Alphege. This is a commitment which is shared by all staff ensuring that all children have access to the highest quality cultural education. Creativity permeates every aspect of our teaching and learning and is reflected in the high standards our children achieve in all subjects at the end of their educational journey with us. We are immensely proud to have achieved this prestigious award which is testament to the outstanding curriculum and ethos at the school.”
Executive Headteacher, Liz Thomas-Friend stated that: “With all the uncertainty and anxiety in society currently, this is a wonderful indication of the promise of youth and that we must ensure that our young children grow up to understand the importance of creativity, self-confidence and community engagement. St Alphege is a beacon of hope and joy in our community.”
Children are naturally creative. It is our job to give them the freedom, materials and space to let their creativity blossom to its full potential.