Mark the date, as Congress has declared the second week in September (September 12-18), ‘Arts in Education Week’.
Our council, the Madison Area Arts Council, has been a long time advocate and supporter of arts education, not only within our local schools, but within our greater community as well.
Stay tuned in the coming weeks, as we’ll announce a special community program to highlight this week, and our continued efforts to sustain and strengthen the arts within our community.
From Americans for the Arts:
Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.Con.Res. 275, legislation designating the second week of September as “Arts in Education Week.” Authored and introduced by California Representative Jackie Speier (D-CA), this resolution is the first Congressional expression of support celebrating all the disciplines comprising arts education. This is a very positive showing of support for arts education and comes at a key time when Congress is making plans to overhaul federal education policy. Take two minutes to send a message of support for arts education to your member of Congress!
The resolution seeks to support the attributes of arts education that are recognized as instrumental to developing a well-rounded education such as creativity, imagination, and cross-cultural understanding. H.Con.Res. 275 also highlights the critical link between those skills and preparing our children for gaining a competitive edge in the global economy. This is an important message for policy makers to acknowledge as they prepare to reauthorize federal education policy.
H. CON. RES. 275
Whereas arts education, comprising a rich array of disciplines including dance, music, theatre, media arts, literature, design, and visual arts, is a core academic subject and an essential element of a complete and balanced education for all students;
Whereas according to Albert Einstein, `After a certain high level of technical skill is achieved, science
and art tend to coalesce in esthetics, plasticity, and form. The greatest scientists are artists as well.';
Whereas arts education enables students to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills, imagination and creativity, discipline, alternative ways to communicate and express ideas, and cross-cultural understanding, which supports academic success across the curriculum as well as personal growth outside the classroom;
Whereas the nonprofit arts sector contributes to the economy and plays an important role in the economic health of communities large and small with direct expenditures of wages and benefits as well as goods and services;
Whereas to succeed in today’s economy, students must masterfully use words, images, sounds, and movement to communicate;
Whereas as the Nation works to strengthen its foothold in the 21st century global economy, the arts equip students with a creative, competitive edge;
Whereas where schools and communities are delivering high-quality learning opportunities in, through, and about the arts for children, extraordinary results occur;
Whereas studies have shown that schools with large populations of students in poverty can be transformed into vibrant hubs of learning through arts education;
Whereas studies have also found that eighth graders from underresourced environments who are highly involved in the arts have better grades, less likelihood of dropping out by grade ten, have more positive attitudes about school, and are more likely to go onto college;
Whereas attracting and retaining the best teachers is vital and can be achieved by ensuring that schools embrace the arts, becoming havens for creativity and innovation;
Whereas arts education has the power to make students want to learn not just within the arts, but other areas of study;
Whereas art is integral to the lives of many United States citizens and can improve the vitality of communities and the Nation; and
Whereas the week beginning on the second Sunday of September would be an appropriate week to designate as Arts in Education Week: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That Congress–
(1) supports the designation of Arts in Education Week;
(2) calls on governors, mayors, and other elected officials from across the United States to issue proclamations to raise awareness of the value and importance of arts in education; and
(3) encourages the President to issue a proclamation encouraging the people of the United States to observe such week with appropriate activities.
Passed the House of Representatives July 26, 2010.