Cultural Education Partnerships (England) Pilot Study

Caroline Sharp, Jennie Harland

14 October 2015

This report presents the findings from an independent evaluation of pilot local Cultural Education Partnerships (CEPs) carried out by NFER for the Cultural Education Partnership Group (CEPG). Three pilot CEPs were established in Bristol, Barking and Dagenham and Great Yarmouth to explore the impact of greater alignment of partners on cultural education for young people. CEPs are made up of cultural organisations working with other partners such as local authorities, voluntary and community organisations, schools, funders and the relevant Arts Council England Bridge organisation.

The evaluation took place in 2014-2015. It involved interviews with 25 CEP partners and 11 national strategic partners, together with data on young people’s cultural participation.

Key Findings

  • Partners are very positive about the added value and achievements of the CEPs so far. CEPs show potential to provide a strong basis for improving the quality and quantity of cultural provision.
  • CEPs are providing an important role in local areas, adding value to partners’ individual efforts and capacity to help them network, strategically plan and coordinate delivery of cultural provision; leading to signs of enhanced cultural provision and young people’s participation.
  • Partners have worked together to design, fund and deliver collaborative cultural education projects; advocate with a collective voice; and diversify cultural expertise and experiences.
  • As the partnerships are at an early stage of development, the extent to which they are effective and sustainable longer term is not yet established.
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