We stay on top of the latest trends, opportunities and threats in our field. Our newsletter provides a digest of current arts education headlines; our Legislative Update tracks bills in the California Legislature that could impact arts programs in our schools; and, our blog offers an in depth view or opinion on current policy issues. Below are the latest news stories about our work.  

CTC Reviewing New Teaching Performance Expectations

By Joe Landon
Earlier this year, the California Alliance for Arts Education submitted a policy brief, authored by Dr. Merryl Goldberg of California State University, San Marcos, which highlighted the role and value of arts integration in student learning, to be considered by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC) in revising current Teaching Performance Expectations (TPEs). TPEs are the foundation of what all licensed teachers should know and be able to demonstrate, and they provide an important basis for teacher preparation program curriculum and fieldwork experiences.

Get the Student Voices Classroom Guide

The Student Voices Campaign (SVC) invites young people to create videos that show their creativity and passion for the arts and share them with elected officials. 

California’s Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) guarantees students a voice in planning and budgeting for their school district.  SVC provides a pathway for students to realize the role envisioned for them in LCFF community engagement guidelines. 
With support from the California Arts Council, this fall, the California Alliance for Arts Education will release the Student Voices Classroom Guide and we are looking for teachers grades 7–12 to use it in their classrooms during the 2015–16 school year. The lessons can be scaled to unfold over two weeks or to be pursued more deeply over several months.  

The guide will equip teachers to use the campaign as project-based learning opportunity that offers students a real-world opportunity to author content, communicate creatively and practice civic engagement. The lessons will use California Social Studies Standards and National Core Media Arts Standards to structure the process, outcomes and assessment; other Arts and Common Core Standards will also be referenced as appropriate.
PILOT THE GUIDE IN YOUR CLASSROOM: Download our flyer with more details. 
GET THE GUIDE: To get an electronic copy of the guide when it's ready, please click here.
QUESTIONS: contact us

Launch of Online Guide Put Arts Integration within Reach of Title 1 Schools

The California Alliance for Arts Education has launched a new online resource to support arts integration programs at low-income schools. The website guides Title I school leaders through a rigorous process to plan and evaluate arts strategies that can help achieve the goals of the Title I program.

“Arts programs can help schools achieve the aims of Title I by facilitating student engagement and learning, strengthening parent involvement, and improving school climate and school wide behavior,” according to the website live at http://www.title1arts.org.

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Art in District LCAPs: Tools and Best Practices

Each June, every school district in California is required to submit a three year Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) as part of the state's new school funding formula. New resources from the California Alliance, Arts for LA and Arts for All offer a look at trends in the ways that districts are investing in arts education and a closer look at a few strong examples from actual LCAPs and how advocacy played a role in these districts. 

Arts for LA and LA County Arts Commission Arts for All have released findings from a research initiative analyzing all 81 school district LCAPs in LA County. The research provides baseline information on the number of districts that included the arts in their LCAPs, which state priority areas are linked to the arts, and the types of arts programs being funded at schools. The findings will also provide a broad sense of trends for how arts education strategies are being used by school districts. 

CREATE California Statewide Convening

CREATE CA January 30 & 31

We’re kicking off 2015 with a statewide convening of CREATE California to ignite collective impact and expand arts and creativity in California schools. Join us in Oakland on January 30 & 31, 2015 for workshop sessions, policy briefings and conversations to open up new opportunities for collaboration. We will be joined by Governor Jerry Brown, Apple University’s Randy Nelson, as well as students from the Oakland School for the Arts and the San Francisco Student Latin Jazz Youth Ensemble.

Read Story about CREATE California Statewide Convening

Webinar: Local Arts Education Advocacy 2015

In January, local school boards will begin drafting plans and making budget allocations for the coming years. This free one-hour webinar on Tuesday, December 9th at 12:00pm PT, will outline effective ways to be an agent for positive change in your school district. Find out what's in your district's Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP), why it matters and how arts education can help students and schools succeed. Panelists will share their experience with how to:

·      Seize opportunities to impact district planning

·      Understand what’s in a district LCAP

·      Work with a district superintendent

·      Influence a local school board

Read Story about Webinar: Local Arts Education Advocacy 2015

Why Congratulate New Candidates?

With the passage of the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), local school boards have been given authority to set the priorities and funding allocations for their districts, which makes building relationships with your local school board members more important that ever. 
Now that the elections are over, a great way to start a relationship with the winning candidate is to write her or him a congratulations letter. It doesn’t matter who you voted for, now is the time to reach out and start building bridges to ensure supporting arts education is a part of their plans. A congratulations letter is a good way to let your voice be heard while starting off on a positive note.
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District LCAPs show investment in arts education

The Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), passed last year, offers a historic opportunity for school districts to set new, locally driven goals aimed at improving outcomes for students who are often underserved in public schools.

Responding to this shift, the Alliance created a toolkit of materials, which connect documented impacts of arts education to the law’s eight new priorities. Working with our Policy Council, Local Advocacy Network and through partnerships with the California State PTA, Arts for All, Arts for LA, California School Boards Association, Nick Rail Music, Families in Schools and Ed Trust-West, we were able to engage hundreds of community members who:

  • Made school board presentations in 30 school districts
  • Served on district advisory committees
  • Provided written feedback or public comment on their district’s draft LCAP plan

We are now in the process of gathering district Local Control Accountability Plans (LCAPs) from the advocates and districts we worked with this year. We will share them on LCAP Watch, a site that aims to gather LCAPs from all of California’s schools districts to create public transparency in school district plans and budgets.

Read Story about District LCAPs show investment in arts education

Alliance Joins LCAP Watch

The California Alliance for Arts Education is proud to partner with Education Trust-West on LCAP Watch, an effort aimed at creating public transparency into school district plans and budgets. It will gather completed LCAPs in a central location online to facilitate analysis, monitoring and accountability around these plans.

According to Education Trust-West,

“When Governor Jerry Brown dramatically reformed school funding in 2013, he also required that school districts engage in an open, transparent, and public budgeting and planning process. A central component of this is the Local Control and Accountability Plan, or LCAP. The LCAP is the district’s 3-year plan for how it will use state funding to serve all students, including low-income students, English learners, and foster youth.

In the LCAP, the district presents its goals, actions, and expenditures. The district must describe what needs each goal addresses and the metrics being used to measure progress. After 2014-15, districts will report how the actions presented in the LCAP have improved outcomes for students.”

LCAP Watch is managed by the Education Trust–West and represents a coalition of partner organizations, including the Alliance who share our commitment to transparency. Many of these partners have also helped make the content possible.

Read Story about Alliance Joins LCAP Watch

Increase Arts Funding for California



The State Legislative Budget Conference Committee will meet tomorrow to discuss the increase in state arts funding that was recommended by the Assembly earlier this month. This is first chance in over a decade to restore funding for the arts in our state! Please send a letter by end of day today.

Visit the Californians for the Arts website for a template and more information. Personalised letter are the most effective. Below are two sample letters sent my the California Alliance for Arts Education.  Read Story about Increase Arts Funding for California