Labour pledges to reverse declines in arts education

The Opposition referenced analysis by the Campaign for the Arts, showing a 47% drop in entries to GCSE arts subjects.

The Opposition has pledged to combat huge declines in the number of pupils learning arts subjects, referencing analysis by the Campaign for the Arts.

On Thursday Sir Keir Starmer told BBC Front Row: “when you see that statistic – 47% drop in young people doing GCSE art and culture – that is going to strip out the next generation if we don’t turn it around. So I’m determined, on day one, we will change that in the curriculum. It will be counted again.”1

Labour has committed to include arts subjects in the ‘Progress 8’ measures by which secondary schools are assessed in England, and to “put creativity at the heart of the curriculum” as part of a broader review. 2

We’re urging all parties to adopt these policies – to address the calamitous decline in the uptake of arts subjects, and to ensure that every child has opportunities to discover the arts at school.

Our analysis of declining arts enrolment at GCSE – referenced by the Labour leader in his speech on Thursday and in interviews with the BBC and LBC – was funded entirely by our supporters. If you can, please consider making a donation to the Campaign for the Arts. We’re a people-powered charity, and we depend on the generosity of our supporters for everything we do.

  1. Front Row, BBC Radio 4, 14 March 2024[]
  2. Keir Starmer’s speech at the Labour Creatives Conference, 14 March 2024[]
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