Today, I am delighted to announce that the V&A has launched its most ambitious ever schools programme, V&A Innovate. Available to every school in England, the programme has been created to champion Design and Technology (D&T) as an essential curriculum subject and exciting career pathway.
Design education plays a pivotal role in equipping young people with the skills to grapple with our fast-changing world. Design education unleashes imagination and fosters ingenuity – the twin pillars of the V&A. What would our planet look like if people decided they didn’t want to make things, mend things or invent things? Creativity in all its forms and outcomes is essential – and teaching young people key design- and technology-based skills is more important than ever.
With the recent decline in young people taking up arts subjects as GCSEs, we have developed V&A Innovate to bring the breadth, diversity and relevance of D&T to life in the classroom and unlock the creative potential of the next generation of designers, makers and creatives. V&A Innovate introduces key stage 3 (KS3) students – at a pivotal point in their education – to core design principles used in industry, to support teachers and prepare students for the new D&T GCSE. Designed to be as flexible as possible, V&A Innovate can be delivered over one term, in an after-school club, over a few weeks, or intensively over one day.
Grounded in the V&A’s world-leading collections, exhibition research and cutting-edge industry practice, V&A Innovate has been created with teachers and designers to equip young people at KS3 level with the confidence and skills to develop solutions for real-world issues. The programme includes a professional development programme for teachers; annual awards for schools, teachers and young people, and a flagship conference as a platform for some of today’s most innovative thought-leaders in design education.
V&A Innovate 2019/20 themes are inspired by the V&A’s exhibition programme:
- GO – How might we give more people the ability to be mobile, and give people and the planet a better chance to breathe? (Cars: Accelerating the Modern World)
- EAT – How might we ensure that the way we eat is sustainable, and give more people access to affordable and healthy food? (Food: Bigger than the Plate)
- WEAR – How might we ensure that what we wear is part of building a better world? (Mary Quant)
Our new online resource hub, featuring free, downloadable resources is available to download from today, with toolkits, animated video guides, a series of interviews with contemporary designers and makers on their practice and a range of activities. Please visit and sign up here.