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Home > Past Buzz > Birmingham UK's New Fame Academy
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It's Brum's own Fame Academy Oct. 19, 2004
By Jessica Shepherd, Evening Mail

Castle Vale School is becoming Birmingham's Fame Academy as it follows the beat of its enthusiastic dance teacher.

Sarah-Jane Carter-Dornan is helping to nurture a wealth of young talent at the comprehensive in Farnborough Road.

Castle Vale School, which was awarded specialist performing arts status two years ago, is one of only a handful of city schools to offer GCSEs in art, music, drama and dance.

Last week a group of 25 students spent an intensive three days rehearsing the musical Fame at the Woodlands camp, in Walsall.

Head teacher Clive Owen, aged 49, said: "The standard of performing arts is quite amazing and it is so rewarding to see how drama, music, art and dance boost the self-esteem and confidence of our students.

"We are proud of the way we launch pupils' careers in the performing arts and beyond."

Since arriving two months ago, Mr Owen has fostered a relationship with Josiah Mason College, in Erdington, so that Castle Vale's 14 to 16-year-olds can broaden their choice of GCSE subjects.

A talent for performing is not compulsory, and the school offers the normal academic curriculum.

This year Castle Vale published its best Key Stage Three results, with 62 per cent of 14-year-olds awarded Level Five or higher in maths, compared to 50 per cent last year.

Mr Owen said: "We aim to put information technology at the centre of all our learning. We also want to incorporate IT into the performing arts curriculum by teaching music technology."


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