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Inclusive Practice Collective to create 60 jobs & bring drama to disabled young people in 15 schools

Posted 22 Jul 2023 by Joe Duggan

Inclusive Practice Collective to create 60 jobs & bring drama to disabled young people in 15 schools

The National Youth Theatre are inviting young people, non-mainstream schools and colleges (known as SEND*), and cultural community partners in Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire and London to work with us on a new national Inclusive Practice Collective.

Inspired by young people engaged in our inclusion programme and our work in schools, this open call is an urgent response offering creativity, connection and a boost to drama provision in schools for disabled young people and will provide crucial jobs for young creatives facing unemployment.

The collective is enabled by the Government’s Kickstart Scheme and in its first year will create a programme of regular National Youth Theatre opportunities for young disabled people in 15 schools and colleges around the country and 60 paid job placements for young people on Universal Credit. 

The Collective will:  

  • Create 60 new paid job placements for young inclusion facilitators aged 18-24
  • Facilitate two academic terms of regular inclusive theatre activity for disabled young people in 15 SEND* Schools and Colleges in Greater Manchester,  Leeds, Bradford, West Yorkshire and London
  • Up-skill and support young inclusion facilitators with industry-led talent development
  • Work with cultural partners rooted in their communities to connect the collective to existing programmes and future employment opportunities 
  • Stage a digital festival for the Collective celebrating inclusive theatre practice in schools and colleges
  • Offer progression routes for young disabled people into the National Youth Theatre membership and on to other local cultural opportunities 

Young Facilitator Role: Register your Interest

School, College and community partners email participation@nyt.org.uk by 25 March 2021 to arrange a call to discuss working together

In the first year job placements will last six months with cohorts starting in August 2021 and December 2021. Activity will be delivered in partner schools between September 2021 and May 2022.  

The collective marks the expansion around the country of NYT’s growing Inclusive Practice programme, which is designed to improve the representation of young disabled talent within our membership and reduce barriers to accessing our opportunities. The collective, informed by the school community, young people and local partners, will offer creativity, connectivity and opportunities for young disabled people within school environments.

The creation of these new roles is inspired by our young members' commitment to inclusion who have been working with us on our Inclusion Programme and want to develop careers in Inclusive Practice. We also want to respond to the impact of the pandemic on accessible opportunities and employment prospects for young creative people, by empowering a new generation of paid inclusive practice practitioners. Through an inclusive digital festival celebrating the work of the collective we hope to form national connections between schools and colleges and engage with like-minded cultural partners rooted in their communities around the country to join up with existing provision and signpost the collective to future employment opportunities.

We’re looking for:

  • 60 young people aged 18-24 in Greater Manchester, Leeds, Bradford, West Yorkshire and London interested in a future in participatory arts 
  • 15 host SEND Schools and Colleges in Bradford, Greater Manchester, Leeds, London and West Yorkshire 
  • Local cultural partners in Bradford, Greater Manchester, London and West Yorkshire with existing inclusive programmes for young people with disability or those specifically interested in establishing new provision

If you’re a young person interested in joining the Inclusive Practice Collective fill this form to express your interest  

Formal recruitment will begin in March with a pro-active search working with community partners, job centres and referral agencies including the local authority and youth employment programme in NYT’s home borough of Islington and around the UK. All eligible young people interested in joining the Inclusive Practice Collective are encouraged to apply. NYT particularly welcome applications from people whose identities are currently under-represented in the performing arts and have made a positive commitment to employing d/Deaf and disabled people and guarantee to interview all d/Deaf and disabled candidates who meet the minimum essential criteria for the role.

Specialist schools and colleges and cultural community partners rooted in their local communities can email participation@nyt.org.uk by 25 March 2021 to arrange a call to discuss working together on the scheme, which aims to build a national community of SEND* schools with a focus on creativity and the arts.

Inclusive Practice at National Youth Theatre - Inclusive Practice is essential to the work that we do, and we want to make sure that NYT is always a welcoming and accessible place for disabled and neurodiverse young people. As part of this commitment we are a Cultural Inclusion Manifesto supporter, and run a programme of targeted work which has recently included successful partnerships for over three years with London schools Highshore and Samuel Rhodes in our home borough of Islington, inclusion training for NYT staff, associate artists and inclusion ambassadors, the introduction of relaxed performances and auditions, new commissions by Athena Stevens, Ann Akin and Nessah Muthy foregrounding disabled narratives and performers and successful creative collaborations with inclusive sector leaders Diverse City, Extraordinary Bodies and Touretteshero. In Spring 2021 we will complete a major transformation of our HQ into a National Production House, which has been designed in consultation with Access=Design and disabled NYT members to prioritise accessibility and includes a Changing Places facility. Young disabled voices are represented strongly amongst NYT’s Youth Trustees and Centre Stage Creatives based around the UK.  

"Disabled people and all young people are most at risk of reduced opportunities post-Covid. Rising unemployment figures emphasise the urgent need for a social and cultural recovery that prioritises creative jobs, ensures accessible and inclusive opportunities and celebrates the diversity of British youth in all its forms and that's exactly what our new Inclusive Practice Collective is designed to do.” Paul Roseby OBE, CEO and Artistic Director of National Youth Theatre

“I am so excited to see this Kickstart programme happen, we need young, and passionate allies to continue making this industry an inclusive one. Inclusion should be cool, creative and at the forefront of our practice;  National Youth Theatre and its members have the power to do this and they are such an important voice in our industry.” Rachel Denning, Actor, NYT alumna and NYT Associate on the Inclusive Practice programme

“Samuel Rhodes school have been lucky enough to have the opportunity to work with the National Youth Theatre. The difference they have made to the children is immeasurable and they have successfully worked with every child in secondary. The workshops were inspiring to our young people as they explored many different themes linked to life skills and personal, social development. The sense of achievement these workshops and after school club has brought to the young people and parents has been fantastic. We really hope this is a relationship that can keep building and inspire the pupils as they move towards adulthood and independence.” Chelsea Taylor-Day, Head of KS3 and Creative Arts, Samuel Rhodes School

“Touretteshero have been working with NYT over lockdown & it's been great - this is an exciting role!”  Touretteshero

“The NYT inclusion programme is a joy to be a part of. It gives members like me a chance to be creative and learn skills and see first hand the power of storytelling across backgrounds, disabilities and ages. It’s been a privilege to work alongside partners like Touretteshero to continue to make this work happen online and see the confidence of everyone involved bloom despite the pandemic.” Kieran Rose, NYT Member & Inclusion Ambassador

“Highshore School has been working with the National Youth Theatre since spring 2018 to pilot a variety of inclusive workshops and after school clubs. Students that have taken part have become more confident, have been more willing to work with others and have found new ways to communicate not only in their drama but in their school life”  The Staff and Students of Highshore School

Find out more about our Inclusive Practice programme

Find out more about the Government’s KickStart programme


If you need this information in any other format you can contact us on info@nyt.org.uk or 020 7561 8661.



IMAGE ALTERNATIVE TEXT: Inclusive Practice programme participant playing a game with arms open wide against a yellow background with text: 'Open Call, Inclusive Practice Collective and National Youth Theatre logo'

*non-mainstream schools and colleges who support young people who may be disabled, neurodiverse and / or have long-term medical or mental health conditions.