Transforming education through the Arts

Dr Tanya Vaughan1 and Professor Brian Caldwell2

1Educational Transformations and the University of Melbourne, Level 1, 181 Bay Street, Brighton, Victoria 3186, tanya@educationaltransformations.com.au
2Educational Transformations and the University of Melbourne, Level 1, 181 Bay Street, Brighton, Victoria 3186, brian@educationaltransformations.com.au

The Song Room (TSR) is a non-profit organisation that provides free music and arts-based programs for children in disadvantaged and other high-need settings. Researchers examined the performance of students in 10 schools in highly disadvantaged settings in Western Sydney, within a quasi-experimental model with three groups of schools 1) longer-term TSR - 12-18 months 2) initial TSR - 6 months and 3) non-participating – control.

Students in TSR programs outperformed students in non-TSR schools in literacy outcomes and had higher levels of attendance. The gain in achievement in reading is approximately one year. A higher proportion of student in TSR programs were at the highest levels of Social Emotional Wellbeing (SEW) and resilience than their counterparts in non-TSR schools.

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