The Arts have the power to change and shape young people’s lives’


Cultural Learning Alliance,
ImagineNation: the value of cultural learning 2017

Chorlton High School is committed to developing high quality Arts education. The Arts provide knowledge, skills, values and attributes that can play a significant role in young people’s development, creating opportunities for them to express their ideas and form their values, and equipping them with the ability to navigate a rapidly changing world. We believe that the arts is not an add-on, or a nice-to-have element of the curriculum, but is part of the fabric of our society, and all young people have a right to experience the best, and to be given the opportunity to contribute to the arts and culture of the future. In schools, the arts should be a vital part of a broad and balanced curriculum, with social, educational, economic and personal benefits for children and young people, and for society as a whole.

As a school, that was a designated specialist Arts College, our vision for learning across the curriculum is based on the belief that creativity is a vital component of lifelong learning. We nurture creativity and imagination throughout the school curriculum to help students discover the world, solve problems and visualise the future. These skills are as relevant to the scientist and the mathematician as they are to the musician or designer.

In addition to creativity across the curriculum the Arts subjects themselves are valued across the school. There is a wealth of evidence to show that studying the Arts fosters creativity, innovation, empathy, and resilience. In Years 7 and 8 all students study discrete lessons of art, dance, dance and music for one hour per week, which is taught by subject specialists. At Key Stage 4 all students must choose an Art subject as part of their GCSE options. 

Through providing high quality Arts education we have been able to transform learning for both our students and the local community. The superb facilities ensure that students have every opportunity to excel in the Arts. This includes the ‘Blue Box Theatre’, a fantastic professional performance space and the Maurice Gibb Recording Studio.

Our Music, Drama and Dance departments have developed outstanding reputations and results. The educational experience is vastly enriched throughout year as students have master classes with professional companies of actors, dancers and musicians from a number of professional Arts groups and establishments across the city including the BBC Philharmonic and Royal Exchange Theatre. 

In addition to their lessons students are also able to experience a strong extra-curricular offer in the Arts, which a range of additional peripatetic instrumental lessons. These lessons offer small groups individual tuition from specialist teachers. There are additional costs for these lessons, however they are subsidised by the school to help make learning a musical instrument accessible to all.

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