I will be working this year as a Creative Associate (CA) with the Creative Schools project. I am very excited to be given this opportunity and I am really looking forward to meeting the school and all the pupils.

This project is an initiative of the Creative Ireland programme and endeavours to further develop, celebrate and shape the place of the arts and creativity in schools.The CA’s role is to facilitate opportunities that encourage creative dialogue with the children or young adults and to support a creative response to their thoughts and ideas.

The Scoileanna Ildánacha/Creative Schools initiative aims to put the arts and creativity at the heart of children and young people’s lives. See fund partner details at the end of this blog.

Natural Mandala, 5th class pupils in Gaelscoil Chill Dara, Green Road, The Curragh. Thanks to Riverbank Arts Centre for Home is Where The Art Is 2017 project.

The Creative Schools project is part of the Creative Ireland programme and takes place in both primary and secondary schools across Ireland. It commenced in 2018 as a pilot scheme. Each school project is led by a team of CA’s who are contracted to explore the idea of creative engagement in each of the successful applicant schools. To date approximately 600 schools will have taken part in the project, that includes the 164 successful schools of 2020/ 2021.

This is my first year to join the Creative Associate team and I look forward to getting my school allocation, which will be in the Meath, Laois or Kildare area. I have completed my training, which took place on Zoom with 50 to 60 other creatives, as part of the programme. I look forward to meeting my school coordinator and all of the relevant pupils very soon.

Image: Natural Mandala made by a 5th class pupil in Gaelscoil Chill Dara, Green Road, The Curragh. Funded by Riverbank Arts Centre, 2016. Process supported by artist Breda Marron.

The CA matches the needs of schools to arts and creative opportunities in their locality. Their role is to identify potential avenues for creative engagement, to inspire, energise and drive the project forward. This project has the potential to impact and shape the place of the arts and creativity in Irish schools. They come from a range of creative professions, such as artists, designers, teachers and craftspeople.

The CA works with a school or schools to support the development of a creative school plan that is designed along with the school staff and the pupils. Its aim is to deepen opportunities for artistic expression and enable each school to further expand their creative and artistic environment across the curriculum.

The programme employs a CA who initially connects and consults with the young people about their individual school environment, their experience of arts education and in the way in which they learn. The role is one of facilitation, liaison and mentorship rather than one of personal artistic involvement.

It aims to embed creativity into the everyday life of the school. The legacy may not necessarily be a piece of art made by the children but a whole school investment in the arts, in whatever way suits the schools specific creative needs.

Scoil Mhuire Junior School, Newbridge. 2nd Class pupil printmaking. Funded by Riverbank Arts Centre, Home is Where the Art Is project in 2017. That wonderful hand grip and the finger control is definitely a printmaker in the making.


Partners: Creative Schools is a flagship initiative of the Creative Ireland Programme to enable the creative potential of every child. Creative Schools is led by the Arts Council in partnership with the Department of Education and Skills and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. Creative Schools (formerly Arts Rich Schools/Arís) draws on the commitments set out in the Arts in Education Charter.

If you have any further questions or wish to get in touch, contact me by email, phone or social media pages:

email: veramcevoy@gmail.com

phone: 086 2584367

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