by Arts for All | Nov 26, 2012

    In the ten years that Arts for All has existed, the growth has been consistent and steady. Four new districts and one charter school group have joined Arts for All for the 2012-13 school year. Covina Valley Unified, Duarte Unified, Hawthorne School District, Hughes-Elizabeth Lakes Union Elementary School Districts and LAUSD’s Charter Green Dot Public Schools have demonstrated a commitment to arts education. Out of a possible 81 school districts in Los Angeles County, Arts for All districts now total 54.

    Green Dot represents the second LAUSD Charter Group to become an Arts for All partner, with Inner City Education Foundation (ICEF) joining last year. 

    When a school district becomes part of Arts for All, they receive resources to help ensure arts education becomes and remains part of the curriculum -- even during tough economic times:

    • training for teachers, administrators and community arts teams
    • grants to subsidize artists in the classroom
    • access to additional funding sources
    • support and guidance for district arts coordinators
    • tools for collecting data to inform decision-making
    • clear models of high-quality arts education programs
    • online resources to identify quality teaching artists and professional development providers

    “We are looking forward to working with Arts for All,” says Joilyn Campitiello, Principal on Special Assignment, Educational Services, Duarte Unified School District. “Creating a plan to include the arts as part of our Common Core curriculum is essential to making sure our students are well prepared as critical and creative thinkers.”

    To find out whether your school district is part of Arts for All, check out our website at www.lacountyartsforall.org 
    Photo: Gary Leonard


    by Arts for All | Nov 26, 2012

    Arts for All’s first decade was led with vision and grace by Ayanna Hudson. The fact that she recently moved on to the National Endowment for the Arts to lead their Arts Education Division says so much about the work she did here, as well as how Arts for All has become a national model. We applaud Ayanna and look forward to our continued work with her on the federal level.

    Now, as Arts for All transitions from formative years to seminal years, it gives me great pleasure to welcome Arts for All’s new Director, Denise Grande.

    A native of Southern California, Denise has deep roots in Los Angeles and she understands the complexities of our region. Her relationships are wide-spread. The first 20 years of her career were spent in Education at the Music Center. She is intimately familiar with Arts for All and even served as a coach with Compton, Norwalk-La Mirada, and Palos Verdes Unified School Districts. She returns to the west coast from New York City’s Metropolitan Opera Guild where she spent the last three years as the Director of Programs and Strategic Partnerships, overseeing the development and implementation of all K-12 programming in partner schools throughout seven states.

    Like many arts professionals, Denise’s love of the arts started at a young age. She developed a passion for choreography and graduated Cum Laude from UCLA with a degree in dance. While attending a performance one evening at Highways in Santa Monica, she looked into the audience and saw familiar faces from the dance world and thought, “Where are the OTHER people?” She became fascinated with the challenge of bringing the arts to those who don’t have access to them. But she likes to say that she’s still choreographing. Instead of moving bodies through space, she’s choreographing strategies, collaborations, and models for arts education. Welcome, Denise, to our stage.



    by Arts for All | Nov 26, 2012

    I could say life is just a bowl of Jell-O and appear more intelligent and smart,
    But I'm stuck like a dope with a thing called hope,
    And I can't get it out of my heart!”
    Who can say it better than Oscar Hammerstein? I totally relate to his Cockeyed Optimist lyrics from the classic musical South Pacific. I am that optimist. I imagine a day when the arts are a regular part of every child’s education…in LA County, in America…regardless of any parent’s experience, inclination, or socio-economic level.
    But I am a realist too. Long gone are the days when the arts could comfortably exist as a nice bit of educational enrichment…if you or your children were lucky enough to experience that. Today, the arts are essential to fostering a literate society and a global economy, and they need to be part of the core curriculum…not an after-thought. Arts for All has done an incredible job making that more of a reality for students throughout LA County, and I am truly excited to be part of the next phase of the initiative’s growth.
    As it enters its second decade, Arts for All is strategically poised to influence national policy on arts education, and will continue to . . .

    • gain momentum as a model for large-scale dissemination of arts education in urban and suburban schools,
    • use its success to inform and educate state/ national legislators and decision-makers,
    • leverage funding and resources from a variety of stakeholders, and
    • serve as a hub for compelling conversation and community engagement focused on the value and impact of the arts in schools.

    If you allow me another moment to put my optimist hat back on…I envision Arts for All playing a role in ensuring that every public school student in America receives a high-quality K-12 education that includes the arts. And I look forward to leading Arts for All into this next era.



    by Arts for All | Nov 26, 2012

    Arts for All welcomes Rachel Levin as the new Co-Chair of our Pooled Fund. A member of the Pooled Fund for the past three years, Rachel comes to the job ready to work with her Co-Chair, Janice Pober from Sony Pictures Entertainment. She takes the reins from Sarah Muir, who recently retired from The Boeing Company.
    “Los Angeles is a city that understands the creative economy and how critical arts education is to developing a future workforce,” says Levin. “I applaud the approach that Arts for All takes to make systemic change, not just superficial fixes.”

    A partner at Tabankin/Levin, she consults with individuals and families to increase their impact in the world through philanthropy, political giving and other high-impact strategies.  As part of this work, Rachel is a senior advisor to the Rosenthal Family Foundation, a fund established by Monica and Philip Rosenthal (Everybody Loves Raymond) that supports efforts to increase educational success through arts education.

    “Rachel is just the right person for this job,” says Arts Commission Executive Director Laura Zucker.  “She’s incredibly strategic and challenges us by always asking the right question at the right time. Her involvement with other movements that try to move the needle on large scale issues gives her just the perspective we need to create systemic change around arts education.”

    Rachel has worked in philanthropy for close to 18 years, helping to direct over $100 million to projects and causes that have worked to build a more just and engaged world.   Rachel is a board member of Southern California Grantmakers and Reboot, a network/think tank for Jewish innovation which she co-founded.