CAAE blog archive is located here.

Moreno Valley Unified School District Includes Students in Arts Planning Process

The Challenge: How to Get Student Input for District Arts Planning  

The Strategy: Invite Exceptional High School Seniors to Attend Arts Planning Meetings

The Story: Shania Carden, a high school senior in the Moreno Valley Unified School District, was never expecting to be invited to participate in the school district strategic arts planning process. “[It] was a surprise to me,” Shania explained, “but I was very eager to do so! I was very interested in being there to learn what was behind the scenes in the arts planning process.” 

Framing the Arts for Success in California Schools

Artspiration invites you to join representatives from California’s leading arts education and advocacy organizations: Create CA, California Alliance for Arts Education and CCSESA Arts Initiative and the California Department of Education, for a special arts education workshop.

Outcomes:

  • Understand the background and history of the Blueprint for Creative Schools and the CREATE CA initiative
  • Explore the Arts Education Data Project and its role in ensuring equitable access to high-quality, standards based arts education
  • Discuss the strategy of creating a district-wide arts plan and hear examples from the field
  • Build knowledge of why and how arts education meets the eight state LCFF Priorities
  • Receive valuable updates on state and federal arts legislation that impacts school and district policies

Date: Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Time: 11:30 A.M. – 3:00 P.M. (Lunch Provided)

Location: Santa Clara County Office of Education

Cost: Free

Register: http://bit.ly/2rBp2LU Registration open to district and site leadership teams

Riverside Unified School District embraces Community Partnerships!

Guest author: Peggy Burt, Arts Now Program Director

The Challenge: How to engage and gather input from the community for school district arts planning

The Strategy: An invitation to a meeting at the Mayor’s office!

The Story: On a lovely day in Riverside, August 15, 2017, a passionate group of arts education providers and supporters gathered in the Mayor’s Ceremonial Chamber at Riverside City Hall. As soon as you stepped into the room, you could feel the buzz of excitement! This was a moment of collaborative opportunity and an invitation to contribute to the work of enhancing and strengthening the arts in the Riverside Unified School District. Holding it at the Mayor’s office underlined the value placed on the community’s input.

Update to Action Alert: Support the Arts in ESSA Plan

Thank you to everyone who sent letters to the California Department of Education requesting the inclusion of language about the Visual and Performing Arts in the state plan to implement Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). We have been in touch with the California Department of Education to raise our concerns about this issue and received the following response from Barbara Murchison, ESSA State Lead at the California Department of Education:

The current draft of the ESSA State Plan, available on the California Department of Education California ESSA State Plan Drafts webpage, does reference the VAPA standards and the state’s intentions to support the implementation of these standards, particularly in the Title II, Part A section of the document.

Perhaps more important, the ESSA State Plan is fundamentally an application for federal funds—not a master plan for P-12 education—and the State Board of Education has directed us to meet, not exceed, plan requirements. The template does not require California to describe how it is supporting VAPA education, so the document already goes beyond what is required to signal California’s commitment to supporting VAPA education as a key element of a well-rounded education for our students.

We will present the plan to the State Board of Education for approval at its September meeting and submit it to the U.S. Department of Education on September 18. However, there will be much implementation work to come after the plan is approved, with most of the opportunities to support VAPA education happening at the local, not state, level. To support local implementation efforts, the California Department of Education sent a letter regarding using federal funds to support VAPA education to local educational agencies on February 27, 2017. I anticipate that more guidance regarding local use of federal funds to support standards implementation will be forthcoming once the plan is approved. Notably, to date, the VAPA standards are the only set of SBE-adopted standards for which the California Department of Education has provided ESSA-related guidance.

The most recent California Department of Education California ESSA State Plan Drafts can be viewed here. In addition, anyone interested in expressing their opinion about arts education is welcome to attend the next State Board of Education meeting on September 13-14 in Sacramento. More information here.

How a District’s Elementary Schools Went from 1 Art Teacher to 20

The Challenge: An Arts Plan Was Never Fully Implemented

The Strategy: Community Engagement

Measuring Success: State of Arts Education Survey

The goal of the Arts Now Campaign is to establish the expectation that every district is responsible for providing their students with a high quality, comprehensive education that includes a strong arts program, complete with instruction by credentialed arts teachers as well as arts integration strategies being implemented across the curriculum. But how do we measure our progress toward this goal?

This fall we are launching a new, more robust set of metrics that includes both quantitative measures such as number of participants and event survey results as well as qualitative tools such as open ended responses to surveys and interviews.

With the launch of the Arts Education Data Project, arts enrollment data for every school in the state is widely available and easy to use. This provides us with a clear baseline as we begin our work with individual districts and counties. In addition, the Alliance has developed a rubric called the State of Arts Education Survey to measure a district’s capacity to deliver arts education. The survey includes seven components essential to standards aligned, high quality arts learning:

  1. Curriculum, Student Assessment & Professional Development
  2. Resources & Facilities
  3. Partnerships, Collaborations and Community Engagement
  4. Teaching Personnel
  5. Funding
  6. Leadership and Planning
  7. Advocacy and Communications

The State of Arts Education Survey is scored through an interview process between a member of the Alliance Arts Now team and a local leader. This format provides an opportunity for a fruitful conversation and learning opportunities on both sides. This summer, the Alliance has completed scoring for our current Arts Now Communities and will update our findings annually to track progress and understand common challenges and trends among the groups. We have also incorporated the State of Arts Education Survey into the planning process undertaken through our Arts Now Planning Initiative. These two tools, along with our annual LCAP scan and narrative reports from the districts we work with, will enable us to better track our year-to-year progress and set specific program goals for the coming years. 

If you would like more information about arts planning or Arts Now Community development, please contact the California Alliance for Arts Education. Peggy Burt, peggy at artsed411 dot org for the Arts Now Planning Initiative and Robin Hampton, robin at artsed411 dot org for Arts Now Communities.

Implementing a Strategic Arts Plan in Napa

Guest author: Robin Hampton, Local Advocacy Field Manager

The Challenge: How to keep a strategic arts plan from ending up in a drawer

The Strategy: Engage community and stakeholders through events and updates

The Story: The Arts Council Napa Valley (ACNV) Education Alliance was launched in 2013 to assess the state of arts education in Napa County. A countywide assessment by this public-private alliance resulted in the drafting of an Arts Education Master Plan, which presents a comprehensive framework for the development of TK-12 sequential, standards-based arts education curriculum for Napa Valley Unified School District (NVUSD). The NVUSD Board unanimously voted to adopt the NVUSD Arts Education Master Plan in June 2016.

Strategic Communications with District Leadership: Creating Arts Champions!

Guest Author: Peggy Burt, Senior Advisor, Arts Planning Initiative

The Challenge: How to communicate strategically with district leadership to demonstrate progress in arts education.

The Strategy: Structured, reflective, brief monthly reports to leadership, turning district leaders into arts champions!

The Story: The coordinators of Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA coordinators) as well as other arts leaders and arts educators in school districts often find that their work is well known by some in the district, but almost “invisible” to others.

In an environment where information is often “information overload,” how can we be strategic about getting the facts and the stories to decision makers who have influence around arts education for all students in the district?

Building Relationships with School Leaders in San Benito County

Arts Now Community: San Benito County

Guest Author: Amanda Chiado, Program Manager, San Benito County Arts Council & San Benito County Arts Education Alliance

The Challenge: How to build on collaboration between a school district and community organization

The Strategy: Developing 1:1 relationships with key school leaders

The Story: The San Benito County Arts Council is a key community partner in providing arts education programming to their county’s largest and most underserved school district, Hollister Elementary School District (HESD). For the last four years, they have garnered district support and funding for their comprehensive Arts in Education Program, which they have translated into direct programming at each of the district’s 11 schools. 

In 2016-17, the Arts Council’s goal was to sustain and increase district funding for arts education from HESD and to begin to build their local Arts Education Alliance. With a new superintendent, the San Benito County Arts Council was concerned about the security and continuity of their ongoing partnership. Not only did they want to maintain previous levels of funding and support, they were eager to garner active district participation in the newly founded Alliance. This is where the importance of developing 1:1 relationships with key individuals became a crucial factor in building the Alliance and sustaining arts education advocacy.

Letter on Title I Funding to Support Arts Education

The California Department of Education (CDE) released last month an updated letter to county and district superintendents outlining the appropriate uses of federal funding, in particular Title I funding to support arts education, signed by Deputy Superintendent Keric Ashley.

Pages