Arts Award – COVID 19

Owing to the impact of Covid-19 on the arts organisations, schools and youth settings that we work with, we have had to take the difficult decision to suspend our Arts Award funding programmes. We will be reviewing how we support Arts Award Advisers and Arts Award programmes as soon as we have more clarity around the situation.

Trinity College have also made the decision to halt all non-digital Arts Award training and moderation for now but are offering Discover at Home, please see below for more information.

Arts Award

Arts Award is a range of unique qualifications that inspire children and young people from 5 up to 25 to get involved in art in all its forms from dance, drama and music to fine art, sculpture and digital art. It develops creative, rounded learners who can use their skills across the curriculum and take these skills into the wider world.

Introducing Discover at Home
As the world is facing unprecedented challenge Trinity College London has developed Discover at Home which will be available throughout the current period.

Discover at Home enables children to be rewarded for the creative activities they enjoy and supports them to connect with their local museums, theatres and arts activities they like, online or at home, and explore new ones, until it’s possible to visit them again. Arts Award Discover can also be completed in more normal times, usually in partnership with school or a local arts organisation.

Discover at Home is a fantastic way to keep children engaged in the arts and creativity while they are at home. With easy to follow guidance and lots of suggestions for arts, craft and creative activities, Discover at Home is a great option for parents & carers who may not be arts specialists themselves or are looking for something different to keep children engaged and entertained.

Trinity College London has developed a resource pack to enable families to engage with Discover at Home.

For more information contact Trinity College London team.  

Arts Connect Discover Arts Award online programme

Arts Connect have partnered with 23 arts, cultural and education settings across the West Midlands to offer young people in their local areas the opportunity to achieve Discover Arts Award certification. The organisations taking part in the Discover Arts Award online programme have developed online creative programmes with arts professionals, teachers, parents and young people to create a range of exciting digital and ‘physical’ arts activities that can be accessed safely from school or home.

We will be following the journey of the organisations and young people involved in the Discover Arts Award online programme throughout the summer and will celebrating everyone’s achievements later in the year.

To find out more please contact Becky Thompson. 

There are no entry requirements for Arts Award, no time limit for completing the award, and no set rules on how to present final work.

Through Arts Award children and young people gain a nationally recognised qualification enabling them to progress into further education and employment.

Arts Award has five levels, four of which (Explore, Bronze, Silver, Gold) are recognised as Entry Level 3 and Levels 1, 2 and 3 on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF). Arts Award Discover is an introductory level. So there are levels to cover all age ranges, talents and skill-sets.

Find out more about Arts Award if you are a:


Youth and Community organisation

Arts and Cultural organisations

Museums and Heritage 

Music Education 

Further Education 

Access and Inclusion 

  • Life skills- through completing an Arts Award young people develop key transferable skills such as increased confidence, leadership and organisational skills.
  • Accreditation- Arts Award is a respected and universal qualification.
  • Arts Choices- Arts Award encourages young people to explore a range of art forms and ideas.
  • Entrepreneurial skills- Arts Award encourages independent learning, communication and networking skills.
  • Creativity for life- Arts Award provides a window into the cultural sector helping children and young people to develop an understanding of future employment possibilities in the creative industries.

By completing an Arts Award programme young people are given the opportunity to:

  • Reflect on and shape their learning.
  • Develop their leadership and peer mentoring skills.
  • Work collaboratively.
  • Undertake personalised and independent learning.
  • Apply their learning.
  • Gain accreditation.
  • Develop an understanding of portfolio assessment.
  • Research and explore diverse sources.
  • Learn outside the classroom.
  • Develop non-art skills.

We offer a range of support to professionals who work with young people – we can give you more information on Arts Award and how you can become an Adviser or we can help you develop your offer if you are already trained.

We also offer financial support to schools and organisations who are interested in starting Arts Award in their settings or progressing beyond offering one level of Arts Award.

Arts Award advisers are key to the success of Arts Award. An Adviser is a trained adult who supports young people in gaining arts experiences, provides guidance and assesses arts logs and portfolios. Teachers, teaching assistants, museum learning staff, art practitioners, youth workers and volunteers can all train as advisers. For more information about Arts Award training click here.

Your education, arts or cultural setting can become an Arts Award centre for young people to use as a base to complete their award. To become a centre you will need at least one trained Arts Award adviser. Becoming an Arts Award centre is a great way to-

  • Strengthen links with young people, schools, arts practitioners and youth groups.
  • Gives cause for partnership working.
  • Build and promote your offer arts and cultural to young people.
  • Kick-starts and enriches new arts programmes.
  • Develop your existing work with young people through the Arts Award framework.

To find out more about becoming an Arts Award centre click here.

Why become an Arts Connect Creative Innovation centre?
Creative Innovation Centres will receive-

  • Regular opportunities to showcase the creative achievements of their young people through Arts Connect case studies, blogs and Arts Award events.
  • One to one support with Arts Award programme planning, delivery, assessment and moderation.
  • Support to build partnership and network opportunities for staff and young people.
  • Recognition of high quality creative and cultural programme delivery through Arts Connect Creative Innovation Centre status certification and logo.
  • Financial support to ensure programme plans and aims can be successfully achieved; this includes Arts Award training, resources, event tickets, workshop/ creative practitioner fees, resources to meet specific access needs, moderation costs and reimbursing schools/organisations for any staff cover that is incurred due to agreed Arts Award programme activities (up to two full days.) This will be agreed before programme delivery begins.

Full details and how to apply here. 

Application form here. 

Deadline for proposals is Friday 1 May 5pm.

The Arts Award Ignition Fund aims to support young people facing barriers to engagement with arts and cultural opportunities; we want to enable young people to access high quality creative and cultural experiences while achieving Arts Award accreditation. Through our Ignition Fund we will offer support to schools and arts organisations in the West Midlands to embed the Arts Award framework within creative programmes to enhance opportunities for young people’s creative and cultural development.

As part of our Arts Award Ignition Fund we offer Arts Award training for up to two members of staff and a contribution of between £150 and £500 to support Arts Award programmes. We also provide support from an Arts Award expert to ensure that programmes are successfully planned, delivered and completed.


  • Open to schools and arts organisations working with young people (5-25 years) in the West Midlands.
  • We are not able to award funding to applicants who are already receiving Arts Connect funding. If you require clarification please contact the lead programme contact at Arts Connect.
  • The Ignition Fund cannot be used to pay for staff planning, delivery or assessment time.

Arts Award Ignition Fund Aims: 

  • To improve access to arts and cultural opportunities for young people facing barriers to engagement.
  • To improve opportunities for young people to develop their creative leadership skills progressing to higher levels of Arts Award.
  • To support schools and arts organisations who are embedding Arts Award on a large scale to enhance their arts, cultural or heritage offer for young people.
  • To support education settings aiming to deliver Bronze, Silver or Gold Arts Award within their KS3, KS4 or KS5 arts/creative curriculum.
  • To support arts and cultural organisations aiming to deliver Gold Arts Award as part of their creative career pathway programmes.

Arts Award Ignition Funding Includes:

  • Contribution towards Arts Award delivery and moderation costs-  £150 to £500 (one off payment)
  • Arts Award Training for up to two members of staff. Worth up to £300
  • Half day support session with an Arts Award expert. Worth £210

Successful applicants to the Arts Award Ignition Fund will provide information and evidence on how their programme/s supports Arts Connect aims above. If you are unsure whether your planned Arts Award programme supports our funding aims please get in touch with Becky Thompson our Arts Award Manager.

Full details of the criteria necessary for applying to our Ignition Fund can be found here.

The application form can be found here. 

Key investment applications dates 2019

Important Dates and Availability:

  • Application opening date – Monday 10th February 2020
  • Application closing deadline- Friday 17th April 2020
  • Applicants for the Discover & Explore Arts Award must be able to attend Arts Award training on 2nd June 2020 9.30 – 1pm at Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham
  • Applicants for the Bronze & Silver Arts Award must be able to attend Arts Award training on 1st June 2020 9.30am – 4.00pm at Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham
  • Applicants for Gold Arts award programmes will receive funding to attend a suitable public Gold Arts Award training session.
  • Applicants must be available to attend a follow up 2-hour support session 4th December 2020 at Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham
  • A final report will need to be completed and returned to Arts Connect by Friday 16th July 2021.

Note- You will also be contacted mid-way through your Arts Award delivery to feedback on your Arts Award journey and to ensure that you have the support required to successfully complete and moderate your Arts Award programme within the set timescale.

Get in touch

Please contact Becky Thompson, Arts Award Manager, if you need further information or details.