Representatives of some of the thirteen of the most renowned theaters in England have expressed their concerns about the state of arts education in the country. According to the art directors of theaters like the Bristol Old Vic, or the Chichester Festival Theatre, education in art subjects is underfunded continuously. What is more worrying to directors is the cuts in school curriculums have made graduates underprepared.
Professionals in the theatre industry first started noticing negative changes when the English Baccalaureate rating system was introduced in 2010. Some also add that students in private schools are getting significantly more exposure to culture, which makes art available only to the elite. Casting directors notice that privately educated candidates are more successful, as they have a broader knowledge.
Arts education is underfunded
In recent weeks, parents and teachers across the United Kingdom have also expressed concerns that art programs in public schools are underfunded. For example, recent arts education budget cuts in Wales have forced parents to pay for their children’s music classes.
Unfortunately, the underfunding of arts programs and curriculums means that the cultural life in the whole country is under threat. Cultural events and projects are becoming less available among students in public schools.
According to a Primary Colours report published in January, more than sixty percent of teachers in primary education say that the amount of art classes has dropped significantly since 2010. This is a concerning statistic, which impacts the whole industry and the access people have to cultural events.