Opinion Former Article

NASUWT: Arts and minds showcases the talent, ingenuity and creativity of young people

The NASUWT's annual Arts & Minds competition once again attracted over 1,000 entries from across the UK.

The children and young people who are prize winners are today gathering, with their teachers and family members, in London in preparation for the Awards Ceremony scheduled to take place in a top London hotel on Tuesday 12 October.

The annual event, hosted at the Charing Cross Hotel, London, celebrates cultural diversity and racial equality through creative writing and artwork and is timed to coincide with Black History Month.

There are 12 winning entries, with both group and individual prizes, divided into early years, primary, secondary and special school categories.

Education Minister Nick Gibb MP will announce the overall winner, chosen by the Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, at the National Awards Ceremony.

The event will also feature a live music performance from Alex Blood, who has performed and toured with Mark Ronson and supported hip-hop star Jay-Z on his UK tour.

Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers' union, said:

"Each year the entries to the competition are of outstandingly high quality and this year is no exception.

"The exceptionally high standard of the entries in both art and creative writing showcases all that is best about schools across the UK and the enormous talent, creativity, ingenuity and commitment of young people, which is nurtured, encouraged and supported by their teachers.

"The NASUWT believes that the promotion of equality and diversity should be about much more than abstract notions set out in policy documents. It must be an integral part of the learning experiences and activities of all children and young people. This competition supports this ambition and provides the opportunity to celebrate our multicultural society and promote the importance of community cohesion.

"The profile and importance of this competition has been enhanced by the personal involvement each year of the Secretary of State for Education and I am very pleased that this year the new Secretary of State, Michael Gove, was able to maintain the tradition and find the time to select the overall winning entry.

"I also want to offer the Union's thanks and appreciation to our sponsors for their continuing commitment and support and generosity."

ENDS

Notes to Editors

. The event is being held on Tuesday 12 October 2010 at the Charing Cross Thistle Hotel, The Strand, London, between 1.00pm and 2.30pm. Representatives of the media are welcome to attend.
. The Arts & Minds competition is divided into early years, primary, secondary and special school sectors. Within each sector there are separate creative writing and art categories with individual and group prizes being awarded in each.
. The 2010 competition is the seventh Arts & Minds competition.
. The competition was conceived for the purpose of celebrating teachers' and pupils' artistic and creative writing skills as a powerful way of promoting discussion and debate among young people about important social and ethical issues.
. The NASUWT has received generous sponsorship and expert judging from SecEd (www.sec-ed.co.uk) as well as the support of the following organisations:

Love Music Hate Racism (www.lovemusichateracism.com)

Unite Against Fascism (www.uaf.org.uk)

Refugee Council (www.refugeecouncil.org.uk);

5 to 7 magazine (www.fivetoseven.co.uk).

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