OAT National Summer Arts Project 2020

Click on the sections below to read all about out National Summer Arts Project…

About OAT and Ormiston Trust

Ormiston Trust, a national charity was formed in 1969 and was founded with a view to improving the life chances of young people. It went on to establish Ormiston Academies Trust (OAT) in 2009, a multi-academy schools trust that supports 30,000 pupils in 40 primary, special and secondary schools (including your school!) across England. OAT was established to support schools and provide children with a great education that makes the biggest difference both inside and outside of the classroom.

It’s been 10 years since the Trust was established and in recognition of this (although delayed by the pandemic a little), we would like to mark the occasion with a national summer arts project, to capture OAT in the eyes and/or words of our pupils, through a competition that celebrates and highlights our values. Not only is this an opportunity to create and celebrate our pupils’ artistic flair, but there are also some great prizes up for grabs.

Engagement with arts and culture is crucial for the development of imagination, self-expression and creativity in our pupils. It is widely accepted that engagement in art can help people capture, reflect on and express their inner-most thoughts and feelings and in turn help others see the world in a different way. This project will provide our pupils with an opportunity for additional learning and enrichment, and will support their positive mental health and wellbeing.

What is the competition?

The Ormiston National Summer Arts competition is a call out to all OAT pupils to submit a piece of art – be it visual or written – based on our core values. The competition will officially launch on the July 20, 2020 and take place during the summer holidays. Pupils are asked to create a piece of art focusing on any one of OAT’s values, shown below.

  • Anyone can excel: in Ormiston schools, we believe that you don’t have to be exceptionally bright or naturally gifted in order to excel at something. We know hard work, determination and perseverance pay off.
  • Enjoy the challenge: in Ormiston schools we believe that just because something might be hard, it doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. We know it’s okay to face setbacks too – they can make you stronger.
  • Share what is best: in Ormiston schools, we believe that if you’ve done something or created something others would benefit from seeing or having, you should share it. We know our schools keep getting better when we all share what is best.
  • Be inclusive: in Ormiston schools, we believe every child and adult should respect and accept that difference is normal, that everyone should be welcomed and included.

What are the categories for the competition?

The categories for submission are as follows:

Category 1: The Short Story
Write and submit a short story of no more than 500 words, with an original title, while keeping to the theme of one of the core values (as above).

Category 2: Poetry
Write and submit a poem of no more than 200 words, with an original title, while keeping to the theme of one of the core values (as above).

Category 3: Photography
Take and submit a photograph (or series of photographs as a montage) with an original title, while keeping to the theme of one of the core values (as above). You can submit up to five photographs for your entry.

Category 4: Visual Arts (picture/painting/sculpture)
Paint, draw or sculpt and submit a photograph(s) or scan(s) of your artwork, with an original title, while keeping to the theme of one of the core values (as above). You can submit up to five photographs or scans for your entry.

The project is open to all OAT pupils in all key stages, and it’s FREE to enter!

What are the prizes?

A winner will be chosen from each of the four art categories, for both primary and secondary, so there are up to eight chances to win. Each winning student will be awarded equipment or resources, related to their chosen art form, up to the value of £250. The four academies which submit the most entries will also each receive a professionally-led creative workshop, for up to 15 students (depending on art form), exploring the skills and knowledge of the art form and advice about career pathways.

How will my submission be judged?

All entries will be submitted and kept online. A judging panel made up of Ormiston Trust staff, Ormiston Academies Trust staff and special guests will assess the entries. The entries will be scored using the same criteria and include feedback, which will be shared with applicants, once the competition is completed.

What are the judging criteria?

Judges will be asked to assess the submissions, using the following criteria:

  • Scoring out of 10, where 1 is poor and 10 is outstanding, how well did the submission meet the identified OAT value (clarity of theme/message)?
  • Scoring out of 10, where 1 is poor and 10 is outstanding, how impressed were you with the content of the submission (overall impression)?
  • Feedback statement

Who is on the judging panel?

Applications will be judged by our illustrious panel, which includes: Laura Howell, the first ever female comic artist to have her own page in The Beano, Matt Windle, professional poet, boxer and Birmingham’s Poet Laureate 2016-18 and Mohammed Ali also known as “Aerosol Arabic”, a renowned graffiti artist who has gained attention worldwide, painting murals and conducting shows for peace, justice, and humanity, and photographer Gary Williams, who has over 30 years’ experience and a portfolio that includes portraits, weddings, RAF events and photographing the Queen.

How do I submit an entry?

Entries must be made via our website, here. The entry form will be open for submissions from Monday 20 July 2020, but please do not submit your entry until you have completed your art piece or pieces.

The deadline for submission of final piece or pieces will be Monday 14 September 2020.

When uploading your entries please ensure that files are named with your own name, and where more than one file is uploaded, please add a number to each. For example, if you are uploading a short story or a poem, you could name the file “Anne Other.docx”, or if you are uploading several photographs, you could name the files “Anne Other 01.jpg” and “Ann Other 02.jpg” etc.

If you need any assistance or have any queries please contact the team at roisin.madigan@ormistonacademies.co.uk.

There will be eight winners in total. One winner will be selected from each of the four categories, for both primary and secondary, and the prizes on offer will include equipment relevant to your activity and a day with a professional in that field of work to teach you all about what it is to be a photographer, artist, poet or writer/author.

All the top entries and winners’ work will be captured in an “Ormiston Summer Arts Exhibition” book, creating a lasting legacy for OAT’s ten-year anniversary. Each school will be given copies for current and future pupils to enjoy, as well as local libraries.

Go to the entry form


Staff… we know how much you love to get involved in projects, not only supporting your pupils but also immersing yourselves in something creative. So if any member of staff wants to get arty just for fun, we would love to see what you produce. Be sure to tag us on social and show us your creations: Twitter @OrmistonAcads or Facebook @OrmitsonAcademiesTrust.

Get social!

Look out for more information on prizes, on our social media platforms. Follow us on…

Be sure to tag us in any of your posts, so we are notified straight away, making it easier for us to share your amazing work! Don’t forget to use our assigned hashtag… #OATArtComp20