Art scholarships - benefits/opportuniti
Of six great schools looked at, DD narrowed it down to two, for 13 + entry. She has just found out that she hasn't been offered an art scholarship at her first choice, but has been offered one at her (close) second choice school. Can anyone help as to benefits and advantages of accepting an art scholarship both during school life and beyond? She loves art, and might make a career of it, but equally she quite wants to be a vet! Comments from those who have had an art scholarship, or whose children have, would be particularly appreciated.
I'm not sure if the benefits are as obvious as say for music scholars (free music lessons) or sports scholars (free access to top coaches and other support staff physics dietitians etc). I suspect you get extra help with your art, I'd look into extra access to art depts, maybe free materials, possibly financial help with trips abroad to look at art, do you get your work exhibited at special exhibitions (scholars exhibitions), master classes from resident artists, I think most art scholars will be expected to produce work too for say school open days, etc. which is time consuming, my DS whose a reasonably good artist gave up art for this reason as the amount of time required to be really good would have eaten into time he should be spending on other subjects, then he didn't want a career in art. It's worth looking at the facilities the art depts at both schools have and if there are things like a resident artist, and who can get involved in their work, you may find that that there is little difference between what the scholars are offered and the non scholars just no pressure to produce work.
Unless you have been offered a large financial scholarship, I wouldn't let this affect the decision.
You need to look at the commitment required. How might this impact on her options at gcse and time for other extracurricular activities. Typically the financial benefit is not huge and cost of materials etc high.
If art is a possibility for her I would select the school with the most vibrant art department rather than worry about the scholarship. If she is takented and keen she will get as much input as an art scholar but should she end up by changing direction there will be less pressure of expectations as HG said.
The financial side isn't a concern - she would get a 10% reduction in fees as a scholar - it is more the benefit/ confidence from the prestige side of things. She might or might not have a career in art, but she would do GCSE anyway, and she does seem to be quite talented. To be honest confidence is an issue and this has given her great confidence. Both schools have a great art department, particularly the one that has offered her the scholarship. I would be interested to know whether it is the type of thing that makes a difference on the UCAS form?
The only thing universities are interested in as far as I am aware are grades and a very keen interest in the subject you are applying for. An art award given at 11+ should have no impact on university applications, particularly given that no state schools applicants will have the opportunity to acquire one and many independent schools don't offer scholarships for art. It may be good in terms of your DC's self confidence though and obviously may be financially beneficial to you.
If the art departments are equally good then it is likely that she will develop her art more with teachers that have awarded the scholarship since they have shown that they are interested in working with her. However some art teachers do seem to create anxiety rather than inspiration by pressurising their students to produce lots of extra portfolio work. If at all possible have a chat with some older students doing art from both schools. Also make sure that the positive of the scholarship does n't camouflage any important weaker aspects of the school compared to her first choice. It does n't sound as though that is likely from what you thought before. The confidence boost of being recognised as worthy of an award by a great art department is a definite plus.
It wil not make any difference if she wants to be a vet! However, if she is really interested in science then why do you not look to see where the best science results are, high quality science teaching and science facilities? Do either of the schools produce vets? What help might she get with that ambition?
Hi Bojorojo, both schools have absolutely tip top science departments which is why, in part, they were DDs top two choices. In fact there's no need for me to be coy - the schools in question are CLC and Benenden. Although she has expressed an interest in being a vet, she's only 12 and I suspect there will be many different career enthusiasms over the years. The reason I am loathe for her to give up the scholarship is that she does seem to have a real talent, but also absolutely loves it - it isn't work for her, rather relaxation - so it would be nice for her to have the recognition and extra help in a subject that doesn't add any pressure to her at all.
Have you looked at the GCSE and A-level Art results for the schools. If the two schools you are keen on both get top grades for GCSE and A-level Art and you do not need the scholarship in order to send your DD to such a school then it will not matter which school she/you chooses. Are you sure the scholarship brings benefits other than the title and a percentage off fees.
By the time your DD gets to GCSE and A-level she will find Art is no longer relaxing. The course work is huge and very, very time consuming - even for the talented.
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