Majority of people think art should be compulsory until 16, survey shows

A third of survey respondents said they had discovered their creativity at school or as a child

Eleanor Busby

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Three-fifths of people in Britain think art should be taught as a compulsory subject in schools until the age of 16, a new poll has found.

Research has found that 61 per cent of the public believe all pupils should take art in schools up to GCSE. 

In the survey of more than 2,000 people, three quarters said they had a creative hobby and a third said they discovered their creativity at school or as a child.

The findings come after many educationalists have expressed concerns about the decline of arts in light of the government's push for the English Baccalaureate (EBacc), which does not include arts as a category. 

Mark Cass, chief executive officer of art retailer Cass Art, said that the national curriculum needed to support pupils "creative health".

Designer Sir John Sorrell, who campaigns for creative education, said: “My school art teacher encouraged me at the age of 14 to pursue my interest in art and design.

"Educators play a vital role in inspiring young people, opening their minds, encouraging them to question and explore.

"The UK is renowned worldwide for the success of its creative industries but it's crucial for schools to keep producing young people who enter these professions.”

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Eleanor Busby

Eleanor Busby is a reporter at TES 

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