Art and Design –



Rainford High School Art and Design Department believes that the Arts play an exciting role in providing a dynamic focus for the educational experience of its young people.

Within the Art and Design Department we encourage pupils to think creatively, in order to develop visual images and form critical judgements. The department aims to focus upon the individual, encouraging each pupil to gain confidence in their abilities and learn that there are many approaches to Art and Design rather than one right way.

The Art and Design Department aims to promote confidence, resilience, independence and success through a diverse range of practical activities where communication, self-reflection and evaluation are critical skills needed.


The Arts enrich the quality of our student’s experiences, providing rewarding activities that inspire, inform, stimulate, challenge and entertain. Arts activities help develop the capacity to formulate and communicate ideas and feelings; they enhance perceptual skills through responding, developing and evaluating, and physical skills through control and use of movement.

Involvement in the Arts helps to foster a positive attitude among students by developing a wide range of qualities such as cooperation, enthusiasm, passion, inspiration, resilience and ambition. We also emphasise that this is an inclusive environment, which helps students acquire an important sense of belonging as well as building the self-confidence they need to do well and make their first steps towards higher education and employment.

The Art and Design curriculum at KS3 introduces key formal elements to students through a series of projects. These projects encourage students to work both solely and as part of a group. They are introduced to basic key skills during the formal elements and then these are built on throughout the three year key stage. Each project is designed to enhance and build on initial skills taught going into greater depth whilst encouraging creative thinking, risk-taking and confidence. These skills include drawing, painting, designing, 3D sculpture, digital photography and mixed media.

At KS4, Art and Design students develop their skills and knowledge by undertaking an in depth and varied course in one of our optional GCSE subject disciplines which includes Fine Art, Photography and 3D Studies.

Initially, different aspects of Art and Design are delivered termly and students explore different processes, materials and techniques within their chosen Art and Design discipline. Students then go on to complete a coursework unit by developing a project that explores one aspect of Art and Design in depth.

They complete the course by producing an externally set exam project in which they respond to one of a range of themes, each with written and visual starting points and stimuli. Students will research, plan and develop ideas for their response to the theme they have chosen which will culminate in an exam timed outcome.


The Art and Design Department want to ensure that the creative arts continue to act as a catalyst for cultural development and are a point at which different cultures meet and recognize one another’s worth and diversity.

We think all students should have the opportunity to develop their particular skills through the curriculum and through the range of experiences and opportunities that the Art and Design Department offers.

We want to create a culture of exploring and learning through the Arts that is accessible to all students and skills that are transferable to the wider community.

Possible careers and opportunities

Whether you love photography, graphic design, painting or any other art-related speciality, career options are limited only by your imagination. Art education propels people towards creative and unexpected destinations – many of which have not even been discovered yet. To explore the exciting career paths that are possible for students of Art, Photography, Sculpture and 3D Design use the link below:


The department consists of 3 teaching rooms, a photography studio and a gallery space and is well equipped for general art activities as well as containing specialist facilities for Ceramics, Textiles, Photography and Printing. The department also has a suite of computers, a printing press and 2 kilns.


The Art and Design Department is well equipped to offer additional support to students with a range of learning needs through varied teaching approaches and with differentiated resources. The Art and Design Department encourage students to attend additional GCSE support workshops after school, alongside their timetabled lessons.


The Art and Design Department run lunchtime clubs including Clay Club and an Arts and Crafts Club. The Art and Design Department also facilitate educational trips to galleries for the GCSE and 6th Form students. Students also have the opportunity to be involved in Arts events and workshops in collaboration with Heart of Glass, a St Helens, Merseyside-based collaborative and social arts agency.

To download subject overviews please follow the link/s below:

Fine Art & 3D