Formby High School believes that the arts and creativity are a “magic key” to unlocking students’ potential and develop their confidence, independence, resilience, pride and cooperation. Although there is increasing pressure on schools to focus on the English Baccalaureate, Formby maintains a strong suite of creative courses, with GCSE
options in dance, drama, fine art and music. At sixth form, the creative curriculum includes A levels in art and design, music, music technology, theatre studies and dance.
The school operates daily art clubs and workshops, including 11 dance companies; 12 musical ensembles; a pantomime for Year 7 that routinely involves a cast of over 100 young thespians; a Tech Crew spanning Year 7 to 13, which runs the Drama Studio; and a Shakespeare Schools Festival drama company.
Community outreach is central to the school, with Formby investing more than £20,000 in allowing staff to work dedicated “community time” in local schools to enhance their creative curricula. The school is a leading local Artspace forum for art teachers and is part of the Creative Spark network with the Chartered College of Teaching, supporting the delivery of the Sing Up and UK Choir Festival programmes.
The judges said they were “hugely impressed by the way Formby High has sustained its commitment to a fully rounded creative curriculum in the face of wider pressures to narrow the breadth of student experience”.
“Not only do Formby students benefit from a dazzling array of creative opportunities themselves, the school also shows outstanding commitment to spreading its good practice beyond its own walls.”