It was a happy start to the new year for Mullion School when it learnt it had received a national Arts Mark to recognise the quality of opportunities provided to students.

Headteacher Mike Sandford said: “This is national recognition for the excellence that so many in the community are aware of. It tells the students and the staff who work with them what a great job they have done in the last few years.

The school, which specialises in performing arts, was visited in the autumn term by an Arts Mark assessor who said: “The pupils were brilliant and they realise that they have a fantastic range of opportunities here.”

The assessor advised that the students’ voice and opinions could be heard more often and they are able to make judgements that can help with teaching and the choice of projects outside the classroom.

Major highlights in 2013 were a July production of the musical Bugsy Malone, an art exhibition and dance festival and a new event on the calendar, a Jools Holland style Hootenanny.

A school band consisting of seven musicians, The Zappa Project, gained national success in Birmingham. After winning the regional competition, they went through to the National Music for Youth Festival, where they competed against 15 bands and won the overall award.

A London adjudicator said: “No other group performing in the competition came close to the skills and talents of this group.”

There is often a major event each month and this included a new take on the traditional Christmas show in December when “Out of the Darkness” explored the darker side of the winter months. A week later there was a more traditional Christmas music evening in St Mellanus Church.

This half term’s highlights include two professional performances from Cube Theatre – Aubade on Thursday, January 23 at 7.30pm, followed by Freddie Dare and Ginger Robber on Friday, January 24 at 4pm.

The 2014 school dance show will then take place on Wednesday, February 12 at 7pm.

Contact the school office or Ben Merritt on 01326 240098 to reserve tickets or for more details.