V&A director Tristram Hunt: Creative deficit is an education emergency that’s undermining society

The director of the V&A has told Sky News there is “an emergency” and “we need to act” in order to stop the drop in young people taking creative subjects at school.

Tristram Hunt warned that the UK’s “economy and society” was being “undermined” by the fall in the number of GCSE students choosing the arts.

“We, in this country, are creative and we have incredible creative industries,” he said. “But our education system is not providing the pipeline of talent, is not providing the creative young people to grow and fulfil that into the future.” 

Design technology has suffered a huge drop of 67% from 2010 to 2019, with specialist teachers down by 32%, according to the Cultural Learning Alliance.

The V&A has created a programme called DesignLab Nation which Mr Hunt says is to help young people “discover the wonder and excitement of design” in parts of the country which have suffered economically over the last 20-30 years but which also have a rich history of design and innovation.

Kate Kennedy who runs the programme for the V&A says the key aim is to help students gain “21st century skills” such as “creative thinking, critical thinking and collaboration”, which are “so essential to future workplaces” and “broadening horizons”.

The programme is running in five areas – Blackburn, Coventry, Sunderland, Stoke-On-Trent and Sheffield.

As well as being cities with strong reputations for industry and design, Ms Kennedy said they’re where “students aren’t choosing DT at GCSE – they’re also areas where there’s high free school meals and where students aren’t interacting with their local culture”.

Read the full article and more about the V & A DesignLab Nation V&A director Tristram Hunt: Creative deficit is an education emergency that’s undermining society 

Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin


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