Children at the Ashbourne Centre

The Ashbourne Centre

Creative Partnerships

CCE helps schools and youth groups to implement 'Creative Partnerships' plans which get young people and adults to work together to change the way they approach their learning. The Ashbourne Centre is one such centre to have benefited from the programme.

The Ashbourne Centre       

The Ashbourne Centre is part of Birmingham Education Service’s Behaviour Support Service. Taking children from across Birmingham, children stay in the unit for around six months, after which they either move back into mainstream education or are placed in a special school. The project aimed to give pupils an opportunity to express themselves creatively and to increase their confidence, engagement in learning and self-esteem by giving them an opportunity to create and achieve something themselves, and to celebrate this with their parents.

The Project         

An artist worked with pupils on an ICT music technology project. The pupils worked on analysing pieces of music, discussing what emotions and feelings they evoked and creating their own original pieces of music, which were made into CDs.

Impact on young people     

Pupils at the centre had previously had problems with literacy and with expressing their feelings to others. The project allowed them to express themselves and to bring their own interests and passions into the learning process. Most importantly, the project made the pupils feel enthusiastic and proud of their work and abilities: pupils loved participating and engaged more successfully with the project than with many other parts of their schooling. This was particularly apparent at the end of the project when pupils shared their work with their parents. As the creative agent pointed out, "you could tell how shy a child was, and how valuable the exchange was between a mum and her son: it was quite moving and memorable". For many parents, it was the first time they had heard good news of their children from school, and the display of pride on both sides was evident.