Following the government’s confirmation that the roadmap out of lockdown is on schedule we are delighted to announce that ArtsEd EXTRA, our Saturday School, is returning to in-person teaching from 17 April!
One of the most popular weekend Schools in West London, our Saturday Skills Academy provides Musical Theatre and Acting courses for ages 7-16. Taught by industry professionals and teachers from our Day School, Sixth Form and Higher Education courses, Saturday School pupils receive top quality training whilst making new friends and having fun!
The Academy is run by Jessie Hills and James Wilson, both graduates of ArtsEd’s BA (Hons) Acting course. Here they explain a bit more about the return to in-person teaching this April.
James: “We are really excited to return to face-to-face teaching however we also know that there may be anxiety among parents regarding safety. Rest assured we have lots of measures in place to be Covid-compliant, meaning pupils can concentrate on what we do best – having fun and exploring the wonderful world of performing arts!”
Jessie: “ArtsEd is a fully-functioning Day School, Sixth Form and Higher Education institution, so lots of safety measures are already in place within the building. For our Saturday classes, this means we are able to offer Covid-compliant procedures right from the first session back.”
ArtsEd EXTRA safety measures include:
- Pupils and parents meet Jessie outside the building for drop off
- Temperature checks on arrival with an automated system that you just walk past
- Hands sanitised on arrival and stations throughout the building
- On arrival, students wait in the foyer and are then taken to class by an assistant
- Start-times are staggered for all classes – avoids mixing of groups
- Classes do not move – students remain in one studio and staff rotate
- Class sizes are reduced and social distancing measures in place
- Masks are worn in all common areas and (currently) in classes
- One-way system in place
- Curriculum has been adapted to promote activities with less physical contact
Jessie: “The school building is ‘fogged’ on Friday evenings when all the full-time teachers and students have left for the weekend. This is a deep cleaning process, which is very effective. Our studios are cleaned and sanitised on a Saturday morning just before we start teaching, as well. The school really has been great in supporting us to ensure we can safely reintroduce face-to-face teaching on our EXTRA courses.”
The need to provide online, blended learning when schools were closed means we are prepared for anything if the government guidelines change. Saturday classes will always continue in one format or another.
James: “When schools were forced to close, we proved that we could adapt with very short notice! We are now confident in our ability to deliver classes online and can switch to virtual learning with very little fuss. But with everything opening up again, and the roadmap out of lockdown on track, we’re just eager to get everyone back in the building. Zoom has sparked some lovely, creative projects in the performing arts industry but at the end of the day live theatre is supposed to be just that – LIVE!”
Jessie: “We’re really fortunate to have pupils and parents who have stuck with us through online classes and are returning for the new term. But there are some spaces available for newcomers, and now really is the time to join us. This term is going to be so much fun!”
For the Summer term, the Saturday Academy is focussing on a Disney compilation show that will be performed in our in-house venue, the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Theatre.
Musical Theatre students will be exploring songs, dances and scenes from Disney musicals and the actors will be using Disney characters to create their own unique scenes. The show will be performed in June.
For more information and to book, click here
PHOTOS: Tess Henderson