Cockburn in the News

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Cockburn IN the news

Published Date: 13 May 2010 Yorkshire Evening Post

University students are using the power of performance to drive home road safety messages to Leeds schoolchildren.

The University of Leeds drama students have put together a series of short plays dealing with issues such as drink driving and teen accident rates.

Devised with the help of Leeds City Council's road safety promotion unit and West Yorkshire Police, the plays are specifically designed to appeal to 14 and 15-year-olds.

Yesterday the students took their work to their target audience as they performed at Beeston's Cockburn College of Arts, formerly Cockburn High School.

And their efforts certainly seemed to make an impression on the watching pupils, who included 14-year-old Suriah Ahmed, from Beeston.

She said: "It was a good experience – I think we're all going to remember what we've been told."

Also present was West Yorkshire Police's PC Dudley Martin, the force's partnerships officer for road safety.

He said: "The students take a real incident like a crash and use drama to examine the before, during and after as well as how it could have been avoided.

"We aim for this particular age group because they've not yet got behind the wheel of a car, although they already have a part to play as passengers, of course."

Cockburn's head of drama, Andy Russell, said: "It's been wonderful. When the information is communicated in such a visual and exciting form, that's when it's going to stick in someone's head."

Around 75 second-year drama students from the university's school of performance and cultural industries are taking part in the road safety initiative.

Allerton High, Lawnswood and Brigshaw High are among the other schools involved in the project, which is being led by Dr Philip Kiszely.


Congratulations to Billy Walton in Yr11 – pictured on the back page of the Yorkshire Evening Post on New Year’s Eve 2009 holding the FA Cup with Leeds legend Eddie Gray – just days before Leeds beat Manchester United at Old Trafford to go through to the 4th round of the FA Cup – good luck to Leeds in the League and the Cup and to Billy with his GCSEs – he got an A grade in his GCSE Maths this week!


Huge boost for Cockburn College of Arts

Published: 16 December 2009 in Yorkshire Evening Post

New drama and music facilities have been unveiled at Cockburn College of Arts in Beeston.

Two drama studios, two music classrooms, a recording studio, practice rooms, a reception and resource centre have been provided at Cockburn College of Arts, Beeston, as part of the city's £250m programme to build or refit 14 new high schools in Leeds.

The new amenities follow the completion of technology blocks and a three-storey atrium with dining room, sports facilities, fitness studio and open arts spaces last year.

They provided a huge boost to preparations for the college's annual gala performance, when around 60 youngsters took to the stage to perform Footloose in its refurbished theatre – to celebrate the handover and thank everyone who played a part in the college's transformation.

David Gurney, headteacher at Cockburn College – which has specialist arts college status – said: "These impressive facilities complete the transformation of Cockburn into a hi-tech, state-of-the-art school which we are all very proud of.

"They will help to ensure our young people get the most out of their time at school and contribute hugely to Cockburn's aim of becoming a centre and focal point of the local community."

Chris Edwards, chief executive of Education Leeds, said: "The brilliant new drama and music facilities at Cockburn reflect its specialist arts status.

"They are state-of-the-art and industry standard and will provide a brilliant boost to the young people's aspirations and experiences."
Coun Richard Harker, executive board member for education at Leeds City Council, said the amenities were a brilliant example of what BSF was achieving in Leeds.

He said: "The buildings will help develop students' learning, skills and experiences and help ensure that every young person achieves their full potential and gets the most out of their education."

The Leeds Building Schools for the Future scheme is being delivered through the Leeds Local Education Partnership (LEP), which brings together Education Leeds, the council and the Interserve-led consortium Environments 4 Learning.

The project – the largest of its kind in England – is a three-phase programme to replace worn-out classrooms with the country's most modern learning environments.

ICT experts RM Education are providing schools with the latest e-learning facilities to support teaching and learning.

The Leeds project was highly commended in the Most Effective ICT Partnership award at the Excellence in BSF National Awards in London this year, as well as being nominated in the Most Versatile Learning Environment for Pudsey Grangefield School; and Local Education Partnership of the Year, for the LEP.

A formal handover of the new facilities at Cockburn will take place in 2010.


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