5. Arts and cultural education
Last update: December, 2014
Arts education in Cyprus is manifested in a variety of ways. More specifically, it is part of the formal education provided in schools as well as of a more informal nature which it is either in the form of extra-curricular activity in the school context or it is part of the educational activities of the overall programme of a number of not-for profit organisations which on certain occasions may also co-operate with the respective Education Departments of the Ministry of Education and Culture.
Last update: December, 2014
Museum Education Programmes
The programmes for Museum Education are implemented under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and Culture, amongst others, the Cyprus Department of Antiquities, the Leventis Municipal Museum of Lefkosia, the Pieridis Museum and the "THALASSA" Agia Napa Municipal Museum. The educational programmes which have been running since 1996 in the museums of the non-occupied areas of Cyprus are intended for all primary education pupils. The implementation of these programmes is based on experiential active learning and employs a cross-curricular / interdisciplinary approach. In order to further improve the programmes, digital presentations, interactive maps and drama games were incorporated. The pupils explore the museums, observe the exhibits, search for information, engage in role-play, activate their creative and expressive abilities and work in teams through pleasant and well organised activities. In this context, the pupils acquire useful experiences and develop positive attitudes towards culture.
Art Education Programmes
The Department of Primary Education, in collaboration with the Cultural Services of the Ministry of Education and Culture, continue the implementation of the educational programmes of Art Education in galleries and museums of Lefkosia and Lemesos, addressed to all primary education pupils. These programmes through an experimental approach aim at promoting synergies between the school environment and the cultural sector, as well as at providing an aesthetic development and cultural education to children.
The establishment of two Music Schools is an innovation that was introduced in order to broaden the outlook on music and enhance the teaching of Traditional and Byzantine music. The Music School aims at preparing and training young people who wish to pursue a music career while attending general education. The first Music School was established in February 2006, at the Pancyprian Gymnasium in Nicosia while the second Music School in September 2006 at the Laniteion Lyceum A in Limassol. Both schools have a concert hall, a library and suitable rooms well equipped for the teaching of solo instruments. Lessons are offered on chamber music, choir, orchestra, Byzantine music, traditional music, lute playing, music technology, theory, harmony and history of music. Both Music Schools function in five afternoons schedule and they have also the form of a whole-day school.
LYCEA REGIONAL CHOIRS / ORCHESTRAS
The establishment of Lycea Regional Choirs and Orchestras is another innovation of the Ministry of Education and Culture, which has been implemented in Secondary Education, by a decision of the Council of Cabinet Ministers (December 2002). Music teachers who are specialised in choral singing and orchestra conducting have been appointed as conductors and children are selected after relevant auditions. The aim of the programme is to provide opportunities for further music education, develop music and aesthetic education, raise the standards of singing and performing and provide strong motives for both music teachers and children towards better and more qualitative work. At the same time such activities offer opportunities for further communication skills and creativity. The repertoire varies ranging from the classical to Cypriot and Greek, as well as students' compositions.
ARTISTS IN SCHOOLS
Since November 2002, by decision of the Council of Cabinet Ministers, another innovation was put into practice. Distinguished artist musicians of classical, popular and traditional music visit schools of secondary education and provide qualitative music lessons within classroom conditions. The musicians work with the students in various ways such as presenting the various traditional or orchestral instruments, offer creative music games, perform short works, improvise and create music together with the students. Thus, both children and musicians share intense, vivid, musical experiences. The class work of the music teachers is supported by this programme. The main objective of the programme "Artists in Schools" is to promote musical diversity.
COLLABORATION WITH THE CYPRUS STATE ORCHESTRA (CYSO)
Every year, about 6 000 children have the opportunity to attend educational projects during school time with their teachers, as well as afternoon family concerts with their parents. These concerts aim to offer suitably designed musical experiences, promote aesthetic education and understanding, develop musicality, creativity and critical thinking among youngsters, as well as to provide the students themselves with opportunities to develop musical skills.
The educational programmes for secondary education consist of:
- Educational concerts in concert halls in the morning, during school time. Prior to the educational concerts, the CYSO musicians contribute to the programme by visiting schools in small groups in selected classrooms during the music lesson. They present their musical instruments and perform excerpts from the programme of the educational concert. Musicians often make music together with the children and encourage them to improvise their own music in small groups. This musical interaction between the children and the Orchestra musicians is a practice which encourages better understanding and enjoyment of the musical works. Also concert general rehearsals, are attended by students, in the morning, during school time.
- Family concerts for students of all ages with their parents which usually take place on Saturday afternoons. The musical works are presented by a specialised music educator with musical interaction among children, parents and the Orchestra.
Last update: December, 2014
The first university of the island, "The University of Cyprus", was founded in 1989. This University received the first undergraduate students in 1992 and the first postgraduate students in 1997.
In 2007, the "Cyprus University of Technology" was established to offer fields of studies related to applied sciences and technology.
In 2007 three private universities were registered and given probationary license to operate based on the legislation regarding the establishment and operation of private universities in Cyprus. These universities are: "Frederick University", "European University-Cyprus" and "University of Nicosia". In 2010, a fourth private university, "Neapolis University-Cyprus" started its operation on the basis of a probationary license. Recently, in September 2012, the University of Central Lancashire – Cyprus received Initial Permission of Operation by the Ministry of Education and Culture. There are Music Faculties both in the "European University" as well as in the "University of Nicosia".
Despite being still in its infancy, Cyprus Higher Educational System seeks to link education to industry and ensure alignment of curricula with societal needs. Such achievements will have a positive effect on the number of graduates, as well as on the number of students pursuing their studies further. Moreover, establishing and reinforcing links between education, industry and research will also affect the quality of HE and, as such, promote striving for excellence.
Lifelong Learning consists one of the main goals of the government policy regarding HE in Cyprus. For this purpose the Department of Higher Technical Education has developed a strategy for promoting Lifelong Learning in Cyprus HE.
The establishment of the Open University of Cyprus (http://www.ouc.ac.cy) constitutes the most important step of the island, towards the promotion of lifelong learning. In 2014, the Open University initiated in Cyprus the first MA programme in Cultural Policy and Development (http://www.ouc.ac.cy/web/guest/s1/programme/ppa/description).
Last update: December, 2014
The educational programme "IKADE" is supported by the Ministry of Education and Culture and is exclusively sponsored by the Bank of Cyprus. The programme aims at developing the spiritual and cultural bonds among pupils attending schools in Greece, Cyprus and young Greek migrants attending schools elsewhere in the world. It is a vision that concentrates on supporting the migrant Greeks in the countries they live and prosper, contributing towards maintaining a bridge of communication among the migrants, Cyprus and Greece. "IKADE" operates at two levels:
- the level of the Internet, where a Greek planet is created, which everyone, wherever he / she lives, can visit or navigate; and
- the level of teleconferences, carried out between young Greeks attending Greek speaking community schools anywhere in the world and their classmates from both Cyprus and Greece.
During the school year 2009-2010, 39 Primary Schools from Cyprus and ten from Greece participated at this stage of the "IKADE" programme, which was implemented in Cyprus. By this time, the training of colleagues from Romania has been completed and soon their schools will be included in the communication groups. Moreover, training continues with other migrant Greek educators who will also have the opportunity to participate in this tele-cooperation. The thematic areas of teleconferencing include subjects of general interest that refer to: children's school life, our country, our common ancestors, our language, our customs and morals, our natural wealth, our dreams for the future in our country, as well as subjects that arise from the different topics of the curriculum. It is important to mention that special consideration was given to the interaction between the pupils of the tele-classes. The aim was to maximise the achievement not only of the cognitive targets, but the emotional targets as well.
Please find the available information on this subject in 5.3