Under this scheme to support schools to build capacity in creativity, schools in each cluster will enjoy access to a specialist facilitator, artist or creative expertise in whatever their chosen area of interest or theme might be. These resources will help the schools to build a project of learning and activities tailor-made for their students. As part of this funding allocation, a cluster may receive up to €15,000 funding to help bring their plans and ideas to fruition in 2022-2024.
Minister Foley said: “Creative Clusters is an excellent initiative that supports students to develop their creativity, learn to adapt and collaborate and provides them with real opportunities to express themselves in a variety of exciting new ways.
“Today I am delighted to announce the 78 schools that are coming together to form 21 new Creative Clusters. I would like to welcome these new schools into this Schools Excellence Fund initiative, and I look forward to seeing how these exciting projects develop over the coming two years. This is a wonderful opportunity for schools to work together on a project of their choice. Schools are given complete freedom to design and develop their own project, with support from a local facilitator and their local education centre.
“This year has once again seen a very significant level of interest from schools applying to participate in the 2022 Creative Clusters initiative across the country. In the five rounds from 2018 to 2022, a total number of 1,276 schools have applied to participate in Creative Clusters, with 375 schools shortlisted and invited to participate. I hope that this exciting initiative will help schools to further enhance creativity in their classrooms.
“In addition, the new BLAST initiative I announced in 2021 will also provide opportunities for schools to collaborate with established artists, supporting our children and young people to collaborate and engage in creative and critical thinking – all crucial skills for their futures. Applications for BLAST 2022 will close on 30 September 2022 and I look forward to finalising the details of this exciting programme in the coming weeks.”