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Arts ‘quality principles’ boost engagement with young people

16th October 2015

A set of quality principles for arts organisations working for, by and with children and young people has earned the approval of the sector. Feedback from 51 organisations that have been piloting the principles, which were first developed in 2012, suggests they help organisations to judge quality from the perspective of children and young people and boost engagement with them.

report on the pilot study by the National Foundation for Educational Research and Shared Intelligence says it’s too soon to judge the benefit of adopting the principles on children and young people, but many of the organisations involved expect the detailed feedback they are receiving from children and young people will help them improve future programmes.

The researchers hope the principles can be extended for use by schools, and are encouraging cultural organisations, Bridge organisations and Arts Council England to work closely with the education sector to achieve this. The report authors also recommend the principles be embedded within Artsmark resources and adopted by music education hubs.

Pilot organisation Orleans House Gallery said: “The QPs provided us with a framework for thinking about how to actively engage children in the evaluation process, rather than just asking teachers to speak on their behalf. As a result we produced tools which can be used as templates for evaluating and planning our other programmes. These tools can then be used with children with a variety of different needs allowing us to ensure that we are getting a meaningful response from as wide a range of participants as possible.”

The 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

Read more on the Arts Professional website.