Decisions around the provision of extra-curricular arts activities are made at a local level, often by schools themselves. They design the content of their own extra-curricular activities, although the education authorities may give financial aid. In addition, many municipalities provide artistic and cultural activities for children and young people through schools of music, theatre or dance, which cover a part of the extracurricular activities of these groups. In general terms, Spain views extra-curricular arts activities as an informal method of contributing to the development of pupils, rather than making a direct contribution to their curriculum studies.
At national level, since 2009, a group of state-owned museums organises activities within the “Cultural Christmas for Families Programme” with the aim of linking culture to leisure time and making it accessible from an early age on. In 2013, the Ministry launched workshops for children (“I have a plan”) in several museums of the capital aimed at educating children between 8 and 12 years on the importance of taking care of cultural heritage. More recently, the art centre Tabacalera in Madrid has launched the programme Tabacalera/Educa, which is a research and learning space for contemporary art.
In general terms, the initiatives carried out by the Ministry in this area have been rather modest, being mostly held in their own cultural facilities (museums, auditoriums, theatres, libraries, etc.). These initiatives offer educational activities that disseminate cultural heritage and bring culture closer to children, young people and families. They are aimed at completing the lifelong training of citizens and contributing to increase the number of future consumers of culture.