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Seize The Day Press Release

Press Release

17 March 2022

Seize The Day Initiative

DTEA Campaign For World Theatre Day For Children And Young People

A Drama & Theatre Education Alliance campaign to raise the profile of Drama in schools

On Friday 18th March the Drama and Theatre Education Alliance (DTEA) is running a national campaign to raise the profile of Drama in schools for children and young people.

The DTEA has invited schools, universities, drama schools, youth theatres, theatres and arts organisations to hold a drama or theatre event for children and young people, and to invite their local MP and press to come and experience the event. The aim is to involve all 533 English MPs with one event in each constituency.

Who better to petition those who can make a difference about drama in schools and access to theatre, and the benefits it has on a child’s education and development, than the children and young people who benefit from it most?

Drama in schools and universities in England is in crisis! Between 2010 and 2017 there was a 24% drop in students taking GCSE Drama. The government has reneged on promised funding for arts subjects in schools and slashed funding in higher education.

The Coronavirus Pandemic has further sharpened focus on the risks to children’s health and wellbeing when they have limited access to learning experiences that comprise creativity, artistic collaboration and the imagination, and that those opportunities which do exist are not equally available to all sectors of society. It has become evident that the place of drama and theatre throughout the school curriculum should be firmly established as quickly as possible. The case has never been stronger!

The decline in drama and theatre provision has steadily been growing for over decades. Drama has been increasingly marginalised in schools, theatre education departments have been cut, and the numbers of applications for drama teacher training and drama and theatre degree courses have been in sharp decline. Only by investing in drama and theatre in education now can we overcome the effects of the pandemic and secure the thriving theatre industry of the future.

The three key objectives of the DTEA are:

  • The inclusion in the curriculum of Drama as a Foundation Subject with the same status as Art and Music;

  • The entitlement of every child to at least one annual engagement with professional theatre.

  • A drama curriculum and theatre repertoire that is more representative of the UK population.

Friday 18th March is timed to coincide with World Day of Theatre for Children and Young People on 20 March.

For more information contact:

Dr Steve Ball, Chair of the DTEA,

Editors notes:

#SeizeTheDay #DTEA @DTEAlliance

About the DTEA

The Drama and Theatre Education Alliance (DTEA) is an alliance of UK associations working in drama and theatre with, for and by children and young people. Our collective membership includes thousands of individuals, theatres, businesses, schools and universities across the UK.


The unprecedented challenges for schools, theatres, universities and theatre companies in recent decades led to the coming together of multiple individuals and organisations to launch of the Drama, Theatre and Young People’s Manifesto in 2019, and the subsequent establishment of the Alliance in 2020.

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