Arts Education Talking Points

Arts Education Quick Facts

Arts education is the law in Washington state.

  • Arts education, as defined by Washington state law, includes all four disciplines: dance, music, theater, and visual art.
  • Arts education is not an optional enrichment activity. In accordance with the Basic Education Act, arts education is a mandated core subject and required to be taught in Washington state schools.
  • Despite this mandate, in Washington state, ¾ of elementary students receive only two hours or less of arts education each week.

Arts learning is essential to success in school, work and life.

  • Learning in and through the arts supports an understanding across multiple academic disciplines, supporting overall school engagement. The arts nurture the critical thinking and complex problem solving that are essential in fostering a deeper understanding by applying knowledge, and making meaning of the material, rather than just memorizing.
  • Credible research has demonstrated consistently better outcomes for students highly involved in the arts including better grades, less likelihood of dropping out, and more positive attitudes about school. These same studies show that high levels of arts participation make the greatest difference for economically disadvantaged students.

Arts education should be provided fairly to all students.

  • Curriculum and instruction in the arts must be provided during regular school hours and build on learning each year, in the same way that teaching and learning happens in other core subjects.
  • Schools integrating the arts are better positioned to address achievement gaps, while schools without the arts are perpetuating educational inequities, denying students proven pathways to success.

Creative attributes are the cornerstone for achievement in the 21st Century.

  • In Washington State, creative occupations between 2006-2008 increased by 2.5%, and 100,000 creative sector jobs were reported in 2008.
  • Companies are seeking innovative employees who have the ability to imagine new services, create new opportunities, and develop inventive solutions to solve problems.
  • A Global CEO Study (6) commissioned this year by IBM found that more than 1,500 CEOs from large and small companies in 60 countries, representing 33 different industries, noted as their top answer that the most most important leadership competency needed to manage in an increasingly complex world was CREATIVITY.

______________

1 RCW 28A.150.210 – Basic Education Act (http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=28A.150.210 ).
2 Arts Education Research Initiative, 2009. Washington State Arts Commission (www.arts.wa.gov/education/aeri.shtml).
3 Critical Evidence, AEP (http://bit.ly/ekHVpt).
4 Creative Vitality Index (extracts), 2010, Washington State Arts Commission
5 http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/21/opinion/21friedman.html.
6 http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/31670.wss.

Download and share printable talking points.

This was posted in the category Advocacy Tools.
  • It’s a win for every student and every school!

    State Board of Education Approves Increased Arts Requirements for High School Graduation The Board’s decision helped culminate a week-long national celebration of the arts, as schools, students, and communities [...]

    Learn More →

  • Check out Art Lessons in the Classroom

    ArtsEd Washington developed Art Lessons in the Classroom to provide visual art curriculum for elementary schools that is aligned with Washington state standards.This comprehensive and sequential visual arts curriculum provides an excellent foundation in visual arts concepts.

    Learn More →

  • ArtsEd Washington is excited to introduce our new group of principals participating in the Principals Arts Leadership (PAL) program this year. Through this program, the principals will be positioned as the instruction leaders in the arts, empowering them in a role to effectively guide the expectations for teachers and providing them with tools to help them increase their schools’ capacity for bringing the arts to every student.

    Please join us in welcoming the following principals and their schools:

    If one of these schools is in your community, we encourage you to stop by to congratulate the principal and offer your support.

    Since their acceptance into the PAL program, principals have been busy creating their Arts Teams – the leadership group comprised of teachers from their school, and the community (parents, artists, business and civic leaders). The team brings together multiple talents that will work with the principal in developing a School Arts Vision and Arts Plan. We look forward to meeting these teams at their first PAL Schools Workshop in late January.

    We would like to extend a thank you to our PAL program funders including the Clowes Fund, 4Culture, The Robert B. McMillen Foundation, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation. We would also like to thank the Seattle Asian Art Museum for hosting our January workshop training.

    About Principals Arts Leadership

    The central role of the principal as instructional leader in the arts is a core tenet of the PAL program and is based on national research findings. The Arts Education Partnership’s 1999 study, Gaining the Arts Advantage: Lessons from School Districts that Value Arts Education, highlights the role of the principal as the primary instructional leader at the school level. The findings showed that principals create the expectations and climate within the school building and their support for arts education is essential, if it is to flourish. Through the PAL program, ArtsEd Washington uniquely positions the principal as the central figure in advancement of arts learning. Learn more about our PAL program.

    Learn More →