BUDDING poets, writers and performers from schools in the Newquay area have been taking part in a pioneering project to boost literacy and creativity.
The Story Republic sees pupils receive tuition from top writers while also exploring the work of Cornish poet Charles Causley, using it as a springboard for their own creative work.
As well as writing, the pupils have been making films, creating dance pieces, making story boxes and sketchbooks and even creating ‘poetry fish’, destined to be part of a giant chandelier.
Run through the Kernow Education Arts Partnership (KEAP), the scheme was launched locally at Treviglas Community College and is being rolled out in 25 schools across the county, including 10 in the Newquay Schools Partnership: Trenance, Newquay Junior, St Columb Major, Goonhavern, The Bishops’, Cubert, Trevisker, Mawgan in Pydar, St Columb Minor, Treviglas and Tretherras.
The Story Republic has received funding from the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, Arts Council England, Falmouth University, the RSA and Cornwall Council.
Treviglas deputy head David O’Neill said: “The Story Republic has been a truly wonderful experience, with so many students from so many schools all working together on projects which highlight our community.”
Amanda Harris, director of KEAP, said: “The Story Republic is a brand-new direction for us and the concept is already taking us to incredible places with our writers and inspirers.
“The project has various strands, all about celebrating the story and where it fits into our culture.
“Through our creative Schools Programme, we want to celebrate the tools of the writer but also to encourage children and young people in their own creative writing and to take them to new heights as a result.
“The idea of it being a ‘Republic’ also means that the door is open for anyone to get involved and be inspired.
“The students’ work will form a unique installation at The Exchange in Penzance later this year which will be experienced by hundreds of locals and visitors over the week and inform where we all go, together, next.”