A newsletter just for our Partners

Blimey! There’s a lot going on.  
There’s lots to tell you.  And some fantastic opportunities.
Get a cuppa and read on....

website - schools - an event linked to Artsmark - news about dates and events planned

1. Website

Thank you all so much for getting us your copy and logo for your Partner page on the Create Sheffield website.  The website is inching its way towards some sort of testing phase – we hope to get to that phase by the beginning of February, and we will let you know once your page is there to look at.  

Some of you have written stories to share too (thank you) and there will also be a section where you can add events, should you want to.

2. Schools

I’ve spent a lot of time talking to schools over the past few months and working out how best we can work with them to increase the amount of creative activity they’re doing.  There’s been a change in the Ofsted framework from September 2019 which has stirred things up a bit, and there is a genuine feeling from schools that they need and want support.  One of the things that our Champion Schools suggested was that we gather a group of Sheffield schools together to do Artsmark together…. So, working with IVE (who deliver Artsmark in our region), we’ve had an amazing response to our offer to schools, and I’m delighted to report that we have 28 schools signed up to go on an Artsmark journey together over the next two years.  Some will start in March, others in September.  

What we and IVE can offer them as a cohort is training, support and input.  We can connect them to the arts offer in the city, and make sure that they know about Partners like you who would be able to support them on their journey.  Artsmark is about looking at school improvement through connection to the arts and creativity – at each of the 3 different levels of Artsmark, schools need to engage in different ways with arts organisations, events and activities.

3. Create Sheffield Partners... & Artsmark Partners

Given we have such a great take-up from Sheffield schools wanting to engage with Artsmark, the clear next step is to make sure that all of you, as Create Sheffield Partners, understand what these schools might need and want from you as they go through the Artsmark process.  We want to be able to signpost schools to you (if you want that, of course), and before doing that we want to make sure that you know what Artsmark is, how you can help a school that’s going through each of the 3 levels (silver, gold and platinum).

Just to confuse the issue, Artsmark calls the arts organisations that they work with Partners too.  Yup. So the invitation is for you, as a Create Sheffield Partner, to consider becoming an Artsmark Partner too. (And Tell Tale Hearts, Greentop Circus, Theatre Deli, Sheffield Theatres, Site Gallery, Showroom Cinema and Museums Sheffield, we know you are already signed up as Artsmark Partners...)

To that end, IVE and Create Sheffield have created a special day just for Create Sheffield Partners to come along and hear more about Artsmark, and about the schools that have engaged with the offer in Sheffield.

Some of you may have come along to an Artsmark Partner briefing before - they last for 2 hours usually.  The one we are planning is a little bit different (and will replace the planned Programming and Participation meeting on 29 January - more about that below.) We want to invite you all to our bespoke Sheffield Artsmark Partner briefing on Tuesday 25th February 2020 from 10am - 2.30pm, including lunch. We will tell you about becoming an Artsmark Partner (if you're not one already) and also tell you all about our Artsmark offer for Sheffield schools and how you can get involved.  Those of you who are Artsmark Partners already, we know that until now there have been very few Sheffield schools engaging with Artsmark, so we would be really keen to hear what your experiences have been, and any top tips you have.

There are some more details about Artsmark Partners in the box below, and the Eventbrite link to click too....  
Please sign up.  We really look forward to seeing you there.
4. The Artsmark Partnership Programme

The Artsmark Partnership Programme is an Arts Council endorsed network of organisations who are devoted to bringing innovative and high-quality arts and cultural opportunities to children and young people.

As an Artsmark Partner, you will support Artsmark registered Schools and other educational establishments on their journey to embed arts and culture across their curriculum.

This Artsmark Partnership Programme briefing will give you a thorough overview of the Artsmark process and support you to start mapping your offer.

For more information about the Artsmark Partnership Programme, please take a look at this short film:

Artsmark Partnership Programme


Please follow the Eventbrite link below to book your place and find out more about timings and location. Eventbrite Artsmark Partners Briefing 

In the meantime, if you have any thoughts or questions, please do get in touch with Aoibheann Kelly who leads on Artsmark for IVE:

5. Other Create Sheffield Partner activity

Rather than ask you to keep coming to meetings, because of the Sheffield Artsmark Partners event above, we have decided to cancel the Programming and Participation meeting that was planned for the 29th January.  Hence the length of this newsletter too... we are trying to keep you informed without taking up too much of your time.

And the Sheffield City of Young Makers summer festival that we talked about at the last meeting is also on hold at the moment.  There are a few reasons for this:
1. our lack of capacity - we will have a full team again from the beginning of March, but the last 4 months have been a juggle.  
2. we're in the process of gathering data from every school in the city about how they engage with the arts and how they'd like to, and this piece of work won't be complete until April.
3. we had a strong steer from our Champion Schools that adding in a festival in the summer was a really BAD idea... which doesn't mean we couldn't do it really successfully for families in the summer holidays, but that takes us back to (1), above.

Creative Teachmeet: the first of these was meant to be in March, but we're going to shift it to May.  Will be in touch with a date.

More news, when we have it.
Until then, thanks for reading this far.
Sign up for the Artsmark Partners meeting!  
Look forward to seeing you there


Sophie Hunter
Programme Manager, Create Sheffield

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