Nov 21, 2017

Results from a survey of 27 arts educators

How long have you been an arts educator:

Ranging between 1 years and 35 years

4 or 12 years (4 each respectively)
15 years (3)
7, 10, 11 or 14 years (2 each respectively)
1, 2, 5, 8, 13 or 35 years (1 each respectively)

How much support do you receive for the work that you do?

A great deal of support: 4%
A lot of support 22%
A moderate amount of support 37%
A little support 33%
No support at all 4%

Who provides the most support for you and your work?

In order of number of times selected:

Self-support 17
Colleagues and co-workers 16
Part-time employers/contractors 8
Professional mentors 6
Unions / Professional Associations 4
Past or current teachers 4
Full-time employers 2
Other: (Grants) 1

From whom would you like to receive more support for you and your work?

In order of number of times selected:

Unions / Professional Associations 15
Professional mentors 15
Full-time employers 9
Part-time employers/contractors 7
Colleagues and co-workers 5
Past or current teachers 5
Self-support 1
Other: (Funders) 1

To what extent do you feel you need more support to develop these areas of your work?

In order of urgency, then numerical demand

"I really need support for this" :
1 Career advancement 14
2 Legal issues / fair pay 13
3 Self-management / administration 11
4 Networking / Collaboration 10

I need a little more support for this” :
5 Educational Practice 17
6 Artistic Practice 16
7 Challenging Discrimination 15
8 Innovation 14
9 Self-motivation / Welfare 13

How interested are you in the following?

In order of interest (calculated using a formula):

1 Producing new artistic works / shows (educative)
2 Performing / touring (educative) 
3 Performing / touring (non educative)
4 Teaching your artistic discipline to individual students / tutoring 
5 Devising new projects for arts organisations
6 Delivering outreach projects for arts organisations
7 Performing new artistic works / shows (non educative)
8 Teaching your artistic discipline in a school
9 Project management
10 Leading community projects / clubs
11 Providing arts therapy
12 Policy making

In your own words, please describe what you would like to see more of that would help your work as an arts educator?

The peer network, support and networking
More (affordable) mentoring x3
More Networking / collaboration events / opportunities
Companies reaching out concerning future projects
Companies providing a platform for arts educators to pitch new ideas
More support networks
Peer-to-peer support
Better advertisement of opportunities
Less competitiveness in the industry

From organisations
Arts Organisations to work together x2
Arts Organisations that collectively tackle inequity in the industry
Less artistic control from project managers in arts projects

In society
Shared understanding of the value of arts education outside of the industry
More understanding/respect for self-taught arts educators

Personal income
More supportive work opportunities x3
To be paid fairly / more x2

For artists
More CPD / feedback opportunities based on interdisciplinary theory and facts x5
Arts educators to create their own projects
Support in how to apply for funding
Online resources

Government funding and Arts policy
Government support for artists x3
Government policy that supports and protects the arts, especially in schools x2
More Funding for: good quality instruments
purchase of materials (music sheets, music stands etc.)
Grants and scholarships
Arts spaces

In education
More Teachers
Access to high quality arts teaching in deprived areas, especially music
Universities to teach musicians how to succeed as musicians
More improvisation in schools
Interconnectivity between LEAs and schools

For educators
Freedom for lecturers to create exciting courses

Do you have any other comments, questions or concerns?

"I am actively looking to leave my ten year music teaching career due to lack of government support for arts teaching and the disintegration of music in schools. I have campaigned for parity of experience and tried desperately hard to run projects for hard to reach students, but I have finally had enough of the lack of funding and the rhetoric around STEM subjects - it is hugely frustrating and really does filter down, so even students who enjoy music think that it is not important enough to study."

"Only thing is you haven’t checked what the words “arts educator” mean to all of us filling out the survey. I think it can mean many dif things. For me it involves a level of quality and effort in your teaching that many so called “teaching artists” don’t have"

"Getting students equipped with good instruments is also a major issue, and I can't make progress with them when there are too many technical limitations. We need more people to be trained in specialised instrument repair (woodwind, string, etc.) and schools should make it a priority to get their instruments serviced on a regular basis."

"As a company, we're hoping to start an informal meet up in Leeds for musician / educators, as we've become aware that we're still involved in arts education, but lots of our contemporaries have switched careers and young people we talk to are leaving the arts due to lack of support and difficult conditions when placed in challenging settings for a first job, with little to no support - we don't want to put ourselves out there as experts, just provide a place to share ideas and experiences / get collaborative help and support through the challenging bits... Any advice on doing this or similar groups we could talk to would be much appreciated"

"It’s not just about the money"

I would love to hear your comments on the results. Feel free to contact me about it.