Friday, July 19, 2024

Theatre Is….vital in Tilbury

The Gateway Learning Community, Thurrock has invited Theatre Is… to undertake a three year £60,000 programme of work with twenty 11 to 16 year olds which aims to find the answers to three questions:
· Can the outcome of the groups’ Year 6 Cognitive Ability Tests (CAT) and the predicted academic outcome be affected by engagement with the arts?
· Does engagement with the arts lead to improved employment opportunities?
· Can families recognise that the impact of the arts on the well-being and quality of their children’s lives, and exponentially on the life of their families?

The Gateway Academy is rated Outstanding by Ofsted. This is particularly impressive as pupils entering the academy in Year 7 are often achieving below their potential. The academy already provides impressive in-curriculum support for pupils in areas such as literacy and a wide programme of after school activities; working with Theatre Is… in this way demonstrates Head Teacher Kevin Sadler’s rigorous commitment to developing opportunities for his students, their families and communities.

Theatre Is… will deliver an It’s Our Theatre project with the current Years 7, 8 and 9, acting as an induction to the rigor, discipline and opportunities that the arts offer to a child’s education. The project will also create activity for Year 6 pupils acing as a pathway to smooth the daunting transition from primary to secondary education. It’s Our Theatre projects have taken place in Hertfordshire, Corby, Norfolk and Luton, proving successful in providing an alternative path for young people who are isolated, disadvantaged, at risk, unengaged or uninspired.

‘Theatre Is… is delighted to be working with the Gateway Learning Community and Port of Tilbury on this three year project. We know that our work changes lives, and we’re excited by the opportunity that a project of this depth provides, to gather robust evidence to support this case.’ Michel Corley, General Manager, Theatre Is …..

The Port of Tilbury has been impressed by previous collaborations with Theatre Is… and Gateway Academy, and has generously matched the Academy’s £30,000 contribution to the project, as well as providing performance space in the London Cruise Terminal.

Cruise Terminal & Community Liaison Manager, Lynda Viccars, said: ‘Following the successful performance of Tightrope last year, we look forward to developing our relationship with Theatre Is… by supporting another exciting project involving the youth of the local community, who have the opportunity to perform in the unique, majestic Cruise Terminal’.

The project will be evaluated by the academy and its findings published in due course.

The first year of activity is underway, focused around an intensive period of engagement and development that will culminate on Monday 2nd July at 5.45pm with a sharing of work created by young people from the academy and a celebration of this ground breaking project. You are invited to join us.

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