It takes a village to educate a child, and arts education is no different. Arts Education is dependent on shared delivery of programs, services, and instruction by classroom teachers, arts specialists, and teaching artists. This shared delivery of arts education is reliant upon shared leadership or partnerships between school districts, community members, parents, and arts organizations.
Local Arts Agencies can be one of these leading partners in their community by offering services in arts education, such as:
- Directories of arts organizations and artists that can serve the schools.
- Direct services, such as residencies, assembly performances, field trips and workshops.
- Professional development for classroom teachers in both arts instruction and arts integration.
- Training programs for artists that want to teach in schools.
- Technical assistance for school districts and arts organizations wanting more information on a variety of issues, such as federal education policies, quality and equity in arts education, and strategic planning for arts programs.
- Funding for partnerships between schools and arts organizations.
Arts Education staff at local arts agencies can also work to cultivate relationships with decision-makers in communities and schools in order to establish open dialogue regarding the value of arts education to both students and members of the community. Relationships with school board members, superintendents, curriculum supervisors, mayors, city council members, and state legislators become increasingly important during budget discussions.
Local Arts Agencies’ Involvement in Arts Education
The majority of LAAs are involved in arts education. 93 percent of the responding LAAs report that they are involved in the arts education programming and/or arts education advocacy:
- 72 percent are directly involved in arts education, either presenting arts education programming or undertaking arts education advocacy through their own organizational activities.
- 34 percent are indirectly involved in arts education programming and/or arts education advocacy, supporting these efforts with a grant or contract awarded to an organization or artist in their community.
- 13 percent are involved in arts education both directly and indirectly.
From the December 2010 Monograph Local Arts Agencies 2010. [PDF, 578KB]
Arts Education Network & Council
Americans for the Arts has developed an Arts Education Network to address the specific needs of members working in arts education. Through the Arts Education Network, members can receive timely updates on important advocacy issues, learn about the latest research in arts education, hear of upcoming events, and dialogue with other members on issues of importance through ARTSblog and the listserv. The Arts Education Network’s section of our website also has many tools and resources to address these needs.
The Arts Education Council is a 15 member advisory body elected by the network to advise Americans for the Arts staff on network projects and activities, including conference sessions, listserv discussions, content for publications, field surveys, and program evaluation.