Welcome to the website of Susan M. Coles, Artist & Arts, Creativity & Educational Consultant.

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Watch this space!

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This might be the last blog that I ever write.

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I have never seen my art teachers so tired by the way, and it isn’t because of the teaching of the subject. It is because of the constant demands on them for data crunching, marking, proving progress, justifying why pupil A (I’m not even sure kids have names anymore by the way) isn’t on target for a GCSE grade that a software programme invents for them and which doesn’t relate to their ability in the subject, attending meetings and insets which sometimes ask teachers to apply generic approaches to their own subjetcts- many of which simply don’t work. Purple pens and green pens and orange and yellow highlighters and “verbal feedback” stamps and post it notes cluttering up desks and headspace. Observations, observations, observations. Who gets time to teach these days?

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So, let’s continue to act as the moral compass. Let’s stand by our own beliefs. Let’s work together to make a difference. Let us showcase and celebrate the schools and head teachers who continue to promote and value the Arts and ask them to share this publicly. We send young people to school, all of them different. Let them be different. Let them be themselves. William Blake “How can a bird that is born for joy, sit in a cage and sing…? “

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I really feel I need to start another campaign, following on from Rainbow for Mister Gove and the Letter for Mr Laws campaigns. It’s like an itch that I have to scratch and, I’m feeling really itchy right now. I also wanted to offer a focus for people after speaking at the fantastic Royal Opera House Bridge Conference “Ahead for Culture” and after hearing Darren Henley’s (CEO Arts Council England) maiden speech recently.
I want to get as many people involved as I possibly can, and I firmly believe that the social media and Internet platforms can help to do this. I need you to join me in a collective voice that protests strongly about the marginalisation of the Arts in education, which result from government educational policies.

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