Arts for All
| Mar 19, 2013
Arts for All
, The Music Center and Arts for LA brought together a group of educators, funders and arts leaders in February to celebrate the unanimous passing of the “Arts at the Core” resolution
by the LAUSD Board of Education last fall. Board Members Nury Martinez, Bennett Kayser and Steve Zimmer were at the event where they shared stories about how the arts have personally impacted their lives.
In his remarks, Superintendent John Deasy stressed the importance of swift strategy and implementation of this resolution. “In three years, we want to be talking about what we’ve accomplished, not what we’re going to do,” he said.
Although the resolution was spearheaded by Ms. Martinez, board members Kayser and Zimmer made strong commitments to shepherd it through implementation since Martinez is not seeking reelection.
The passing of this resolution was truly a momentous occasion because it reconfirms LAUSD’s long-standing commitment to arts education. Back in 1998, the LAUSD Board of Education first voted to develop a comprehensive arts education plan. Working with a group of prominent arts and education leaders known as the Blue Ribbon Committee on Arts Education, the district developed, and the Board approved, a 10-year strategic plan for the arts.
When Arts for All
was established by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission and the Los Angeles County Board of Education in 2002, LAUSD was the only school district in the County to have such a plan in place. Following LAUSD’s lead and with the support of Arts for All
, 54 of the County’s 81 school districts developed arts policies and plans during the last decade.
Prior to 2008, LAUSD allocated as much as $34 million annually to arts education. But like districts across the state, LAUSD had to start reducing its operating budgets as a result of the fiscal crisis. But now their bold commitment has been renewed. And that morning in February was a moment in time to celebrate this pledge.
Here are some highlights of Arts at the Core: Whereas
, the Common Core Standards are directly aligned with the framework for 21st Century Skills and are rooted in critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity, all skills considered to be essential in every academic area, particularly for the mastery of mathematics and science; Whereas
, Multiple research studies, including the President's Committee on The Arts and Humanities, make clear that students who participate in a rigorous, sequential, standards-based arts education develop the ability to innovate, communicate and collaborate; Resolved
, That to assure equitable access to quality arts instruction across LAUSD and to address District goals for achievement and equity, the Governing Board of the Los Angeles Unified School District will establish Arts Education as a Core Subject.
**Anthony Masters Photography