YOUNG people are being urged to pursue further education in the arts after education leaders hailed it as one of the country's “fastest growing" employment sectors.

A careers event aimed at encouraging more youngsters to become involved in the arts in education will be taking place later this month.

The summit at the World of Glass, will be aimed at parents and teachers of pupils in years 8, 9 and 10 who are looking to make their choices for further study.

Evonne Bixter, from the Local Culture Education Partnership, has urged young people, schools and parents to think about the advantages of pursuing arts and the careers that can follow.

She said: “Our whole reason for hosting this event is to broaden students' expectations of what you can do and raising awareness of the skills you develop with the arts, including confidence and resilience – which help you in every subject you can go in to.

“We have been talking to them about what jobs you can go into with the arts. For example, with music you can go into game design and online media, which many don’t realise. Every game has a soundtrack and of course there is marketing around games as well.

“It’s the fastest growing sector and in the UK a lot of the employment is coming from elsewhere, which is a concern with Brexit, so we need to develop a creative workforce ourselves.

“However, recently there has been a drop in the take up of some of the art subjects such as drama, dance and music and that’s having a knock-on effect on what schools are offering.

“The creative industries bring a lot of money into the country. The possibilities are endless.

She credits last year’s 150th anniversary celebrations of St Helens becoming a municipal borough for giving more young people a unique insight into the possibilities of creative industries.

She added: “Because of developments in technology, it’s no surprise that we need to look at things differently and have that creative capacity to look for new and exciting discoveries and ideas. We want to have ambitious young people who want to make a difference.

“We want children and parents to understand the opportunities out there and to also change mindsets on how the arts can transform students approaches when it comes to learning and mental health.

“Children should be encouraged to doing something that makes them happy and not be discouraged from doing something because of false outdated ideas of what possibilities the arts can offer. “

The event will be held on Friday, January 25 from 10.30am to 3pm.

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