In order to gather feedback about my mural, I asked one of the headteachers of my school to write a report on the effect on the community. I chose to do this because I wanted an expert opinion and I wanted the opinions of a real leader. Naomi and her Mum, Helen, set up Treasure House for students like me because they saw that there was no real provision for students who can’t access education, bot because of their behaviour, but because of their anxiety and how they had been bullied or depressed at their old schools. Lots of students who can’t handle school go to a pupil referral unit but there are often lots of behavioural problems, Naomi and Helen wanted there to be a calm and peaceful place for students who can’t cope with that. I have huge respect for them as leaders so Naomi’s opinion was very important to me.
Head Teacher’s report – Naomi Long – Srikrotriam
Thank you for letting me paint a mural on the side of the school. Please could you answer these questions about how I created and delivered the project?
1) When I was planning and painting the mural, was I safe and professional? What did I do to demonstrate professionalism and where there any ways I could have improved?
Beth was quick to follow Health & Safety instructions. She was careful to protect others through safe use of equipment but could have improved by clearing her materials with slightly more attention.
2) What did you think of the final mural and the message (Be the change you want to see in the world)? Where you happy to have this mural displayed at the school?
The message and mural were inspirational and we were pleased to have it displayed at school. The mural could have, given the opportunity, been displayed more publicly to great effect as the audience was limited once school closed and there wasn’t as much traffic. Beth wanted to promote the use of the arts over weapons to bring about change in the world. There are far more people who could do with hearing this message outside of the school context.
3) Do you think this mural inspired others to create artworks at Treasure House and to express themselves artistically?
Many students and staff members commented on the mural and were incredibly positive about the impact it had had on them. I believe the general feeling of creative energy was increased across the school during the period of time when Beth was creating the mural.
4) Where there any negative outcomes of the project?
Paint on the floor! Hopefully Beth saw that there was a bit of mess left after the project that could have been prevented (due to the listed status of the site).
5) Do you think that the project inspired people to make changes in the world and to think about the issues I had highlighted?
I do, I think that within the experience of the students that attend Treasure House, there was an understanding of the message and the social context even if it did not directly influence their behaviour (the use of weapons to impact the world).
MY EVALUATION OF THE PROJECT
Development of leadership skills
- Spreading positivity through art – Naomi reported that there was a positive message and that the students benefitted from this. She also said that that it would have been better if more people from outside the school had seen my board. Once the school closed, there was a lot less traffic past the garden and also, the mural had to be taken down for safety. I hope that one day it can be put back up and shown more publically.
- Inspiring others –I am so happy that others decided to paint on my blank wall but very sad that those murals were taken down so quickly.
- Political awareness – Naomi’sn report shows that others engaged politically with my work, I think this is something we all need in these difficult times.
- Turning negativity into positivity – I was pleased that Naomi’s report mentions the use of art over weapons. I know that after seeing my mural another student, my friend Rhiannon, was inspired to investigate political art in her gold arts award too which I was happy about as I have done some mentoring work with Rhiannon (she is two years below me at school and had a difficult time adjusting to Treasure House at first).
This is the end of my arts award portfolio, I hope you enjoyed it. Back to the start.