Measure of elusive creativity

15th February 2008 at 00:00
Schools in England could soon be required to evaluate pupils' creativity. The Westminster government is investigating ways to ensure children are proficient in areas such as imaginative thinking that are not appraised by existing tests.

Assessments would go beyond subjects such as art and music, with teachers expected to look at how pupils adopt a creative approach across the curriculum.

This week Ed Balls, Schools Secretary for England, announced plans to give all pupils five hours of cultural activities a week.

But a pilot scheme aimed at allowing children more time to develop creativity inside and outside school has not impressed heads' leaders, who say funding for the scheme will only amount to an extra pound;15 per pupil, per year.

Qualities likely to be monitored under the scheme include taking risks, ability to question and challenge, resilience, communication and teamwork - the "soft skills" that employers say are vital but omitted from the current testing regime.

Ministers revealed their plans in a response to a Commons select committee report on Creative Partnerships, a government-funded body that boosts the arts in schools.

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