A new one – day course designed to support new leaders of performing arts as well as those teachers aspiring to leadership positions within the field. The day is structured to promote deep thinking about the characteristics of effective curriculum leadership. During the day we will consider the characteristics of quality teaching which promote high level achievement. The design of the course is informed by the latest research into effective subject leadership. This course is not focused on any particular specification but will instead include examples drawn from across the subjects of dance, drama and music. During the day we will also examine the challenges facing teachers of the arts during the pandemic period.


  • Gain a detailed understanding of the characteristics of highly effective leadership of the performing arts
  • Explore strategies designed to secure outstanding outcomes for pupils in the subject
  • Examine the contents of a leadership toolkit including exemplar policies and action plans
  • Consider the expectations of the ‘deep dive’ methodology for establishing a clear statement of curriculum intent
COURSE DATE Online | Friday 25 June 2021
  • Heads of Performing Arts
  • Heads of English with responsibility for the Performing Arts
  • Teachers of performing arts looking towards leadership positions
  • Senior leaders with line management responsibility for the performing arts
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance


10.00 – 10.30am: Exploring the challenges of curriculum leadership in the performing arts

  • Examine the specific requirements of Key Stage 4 and 5 assessment objectives to clarify understanding
  • Consider possible delivery models for maximising achievement
  • Identify the key challenges for drama teachers in achieving mastery

10.30- 11.30am: Developing a clear strategic vision for curriculum leadership

  • Examine the characteristics of well sequenced progression maps for an effective key stage 3 curriculum including key knowledge and skills
  • Explore the features of a well-connected performing arts curriculum
  • Develop a clear understanding of the features of an effective statement of curriculum intent
  • Take away a toolkit for effective strategic leadership

11.30 – 11.45am: Break

11.45 – 1.00pm:  Exploring the components of an effective quality assurance toolkit

  • Consider best practice in quality assurance of the performing arts
  • Explore the characteristics of effective standardisation activity – participate in a simulated assessment meeting
  • Gain a detailed understanding of the implications of the deep dive methodology for conducting a 360 degree audit of subject areas
  • Examine the potential use of the Artsmark scheme to audit and review the quality of provision

1.00 – 2.00pm: Lunch  

2.00 – 3.00pm: Developing and leading a high performing team

  • Consider the characteristics of effective team work and how to conduct a skills audit to generate understanding of the strengths and areas for development
  • Explore strategies for managing conflict and holding difficult conversations
  • Examine exemplar appraisal documentation and consider the features of an effective CPD programme
  • Gain an understanding of the features of an effective wider curriculum programme for the whole community and how best to achieve a balance of disciplines and promote participation

3.00 – 3.10pm: afternoon break

3.10 – 4.00pm: Establishing systems for valid and reliable assessment and the importance of robust standardisation

  • Explore the contents of a mastery toolkit for developing pupils’ skills in analysis and evaluation
  • Consider examples of valid and reliable assessment tools across subject areas; explore effective use of progress information to set targets and design appropriate interventions
  • Final plenary to answer key questions

4.00pm: Depart

Emma Hollis

Emma is a well-respected arts education expert with over two decades of experience in teaching, school leadership, inspection, and advisory work. Emma is a senior examiner and has been an assessor for both the Arts Mark and Arts Award qualifications. She is also an Ofqual Subject Expert and was recently commissioned to scrutinise and credit the full range of reformed A Level specifications. Emma has worked with school-based colleagues on a range of arts, media and design projects as an auditor, consultant and evaluator. Emma is a highly experienced trainer designing and leading programmes on a range of themes and across specifications. She has led training for teachers and leaders in a range of settings all over the world. She is an experienced researcher and has authored several market-leading textbooks for Drama teachers, and published book reviews and articles in peer reviewed journals. Her research specialisms include practitioner identity and the impact of social class on the social and educational experiences of teenagers. She is the chair of governors in an outstanding secondary academy and Charitable Trustee of the Leicester YMCA.