Poetry in Motion Schools call out 2017-18 open for applications – closing 23 May

It is with great excitement that Community Arts Partnership is inviting schools to apply for Poetry in Motion Schools 2017-18 and also to be among the schools to participate in the “Seamus Heaney Award for Achievement.”


What is Poetry in Motion for Schools?

Poetry in Motion is Community Arts Partnership’s innovative literary programme for primary, secondary, grammar and special schools.

Supported by the Arts Council and Arts Council Lottery and Belfast City Council, this successful programme is now in its fifteenth year. This is the fourth year that the Seamus Heaney Award for Achievement will be made.

Since 2001 more than 15,000 students have taken part in this project, and over 2,600 poems have been published. Poetry in Motion for Schools aims to develop the creative abilities of young people and enable their poetic voice through language and image. We achieve this through workshops conducted in schools by published/producing poets most of whom have a wealth of experience in working with young people, helping to foster creativity. Schools that have taken part in this project see it as an enriching experience for both pupils and teachers and find that it also forges many links with the curriculum.

We reach across the whole of Northern Ireland with the Poetry in Motion Schools project.

The project will focus on both the writing and the performance of the work created by the participants, reflecting the growing popularity of performance-based poetry. Students’ poems will be audio-recorded by a technician and collected in an audio anthology consisting of a book and in audio format.

What do we get and how much does it cost?

Each school will receive six hours of workshop facilitation facilitated by one of our experienced poet facilitators. All facilitators undergo a training programme before commencing work with us.

All participants will be considered for the Seamus Heaney Award for Achievement. This annual award is supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the Heaney family. It will be made to the school, group or individual considered to have made the most outstanding submission in the 2017-18 processes. The winners of the award in 2016-17, were Abbey Grammar School, Newry and the award was presented by poet Stephanie Conn, the inaugural winner of the Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing in 2015.

Read a few words from the class teacher on what the award and the project means to the school and a little more about the final event – with lots of lovely pictures.

There is no cost to the school for the provision of this programme.

Participating schools receive:

  • Six hours of free provision of poetry facilitation
  • An audio technician to record the participants poems
  • An anthology for each contributor selected for publication in the anthology
  • Attendance at a high profile event to celebrate the project
  • Consideration for the Seamus Heaney Award for Achievement for each poem submitted
  • Administration and management of all of the above

In return, all that we ask is that the school commits to attending the launch event in March 2018. Whilst schools are asked to book and pay for their own transport to the event, we can assist in some cases where this would cause difficulty.

How do we apply?

Schools are invited to participate in this programme by completing the online application form. Places are limited to thirty schools. In order to avail of this opportunity, we advise that you fully complete the form as soon as possible. In previous years demand has been so high that we could have run the programme more than twice over had the funding been available to do so. With the inclusion of the Seamus Heaney Award for Achievement we anticipate a high level of demand again this year.


artist forms link
New Belfast Community Arts Initiative trading as Community Arts Partnership is a registered charity (XR 36570) and a company limited by guarantee (Northern Ireland NI 37645).Registered with The Charity Commission as New Belfast Community Arts Initiative - NIC105169.