We’re really excited to introduce you to the newest member of the Ideas Test team.
Frances Chiverton is our new Youth Programme Manager and will be in charge of creating events and programmes that spark the creativity and imaginations of Swale & Medway youth.
Hi Frances, can you tell us a little about yourself?
As a small child, I lived in Holland, Germany and Belgium and this experience nurtured my love for learning foreign languages and travel.
I am a qualified primary, secondary and TEFL teacher and have taught across schools in Kent and was a head teacher for 5 years. My love of Creativity and the Arts spurred me to leave mainstream teaching and return to University to study History and Philosophy of Art and then an MA in Curating. I have curated 4 exhibitions – 1 of which the British Museum requested a copy of the exhibition catalogue for their library.
In previous positions, I worked for the Folkestone Triennial 2014 as Schools and Communities Coordinator and also at Canterbury Christ Church University’s Sidney Cooper Gallery as the Learning Engagement Officer where I devised comprehensive learning programmes to engage young people with Arts Award projects, which raised audience participation.
Now, I believe I have the best of both worlds – putting my educational and Arts background to best use by creating engaging cross-curricular learning programmes linked to the Arts.
What made you want to work at Ideas Test?
When I read the job description for the Youth Programme Manager job advertised I thought to myself – “That’s the job for me, this is exactly what I thrive on doing!” Also, I love helping young people on their educational journey, especially through the medium of the Arts – whatever their starting point or background. This is the perfect job to be able to be a small part of that and the values that Ideas Test are aligned to mine too.
As someone from outside Swale & Medway what are your first impressions of the area?
Everyone that I have met has been so kind and welcoming, which has been really lovely to see. There is a wonderful energy across the area that I think is calling out for more engagement with the Arts.
Many of the Ideas Test team are creatives, or artists themselves. Do you have any creative hobbies?
Well, I wouldn’t describe myself as creative but I do enjoy creating abstract works and dabbling in a number of artistic mediums, like clay and print-making. Mostly, I run in my spare time – enjoying the challenge that a half marathon can offer. And, I love cooking country themed meals for friends and family – including my rescue Staffie, Archie.
What do you hope you can bring to Ideas Test, and the young people in Swale & Medway?
I think I will bring valuable educational and programming experience along with a wealth of creative and educational networks and a positive ‘can do’ attitude – along with a loud laugh, at times!