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Family background makes a profound difference to young people's happiness, life chances, and cultural participation. How can culture make a difference inside the home?

London context

Two in five schools do not believe that pupils' families involve their children in a wide range of cultural activities(v). Family engagement is known to be an important driver of educational attainment and life chances.

Being encouraged by parents is the second highest motivation for 11-15 years olds to engage in cultural activities, after enjoyment(vi).

One in four young people in London lives in an overcrowded home(vii). There is a forecast shortfall of 221,000 homes by 2021(viii).

Patchy provision means that where your home is matters. 55% of young people in Outer London have seen an exhibition in the last year compared to 69% in Inner London(ix).

One in 12 young people is a carer with responsibilities for other family members(x). This can have an impact on educational attainment, attendance, and quality of life.

Access to higher education remains deeply unequal, with a strong correlation between family background and educational attainment and life chances – Centre for London 2011

The potential of cultural education

Engaging parents in young people's lives and education. Bringing families together over shared activities to help them become involved in each other's learning and development.

Providing a safe space for enjoyment and learning. Cultural venues become 'third spaces' for young people where they feel comfortable and free to work and express themselves.

Partnership examples

B3 Media has worked with the artist Franklyn Rogers on The Elders, helping different generations of African-Caribbean families connect and learn more about their own heritage.

Studio 3 Arts provide a quiet space in their studios during exam times so young people have somewhere peaceful to study.