San Jose, CA - March is a time to celebrate arts education, and according to Jeannine Flores, the Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator for the Santa Clara County Office of Education (SCCOE) who heads up the Artspiration initiative, this supports students' equitable access to high-quality arts education that is both culturally-relevant and inclusive.
"Artspiration," a countywide arts education initiative, focuses on professional development, student engagement, advocacy, and communication. The initiative will be celebrated in local schools, schools districts, community arts organizations, and larger communities.
"This initiative is aimed to help schools celebrate and integrate arts into the curriculum during schoolwide activities, and in messages that go home to parents," says Flores. "We want to empower schools to advocate for the arts, and for educators to share how important art programs are for their students."
Arts-learning strategies and arts integration helps teachers to recognize and build upon skills developed through visual arts experiences. These skills include critical thinking, imagination, curiosity, flexibility, communication, innovation, collaboration; all of which are required for post-secondary and workplace success.
The Santa Clara County Board of Education recently adopted a resolution recognizing March as Arts Education Month. The resolution states that the SCCOE is "committed to supporting the arts to inspire and prepare students for success in the 21st century and allowing them to develop as productive, contributing members of a strong community."
To inspire art in classrooms, Artspiration encourages schools to celebrate the arts throughout the month of March by focusing on different art disciplines each week. Educators, students, and families are invited to participate in programs that will offer experiences in visual arts, music, dance, theater, and digital media throughout the month.
Artspiration is also sponsoring the Principal Arts Leadership award program for the second year. Teachers, parents, and community members are encouraged to nominate a principal, site leader, or district level leader who has shown outstanding support and leadership for Arts Education in Santa Clara County.
The nominee must work in the Santa Clara County public school system and must demonstrate strong support of the Arts. Nominations are open now through midnight on April 30. The award will be presented at the Young Artist Showcase Celebration on May 23.
To learn more about Arts Education Month, Artspiration, and how the SCCOE is celebrating student creativity, inspiration, and joy through artistic expression, please visit http://artspiration.sccoe.org.
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