Supporting Arts Education

The overall dropout rate in 2014 in the DC Public Schools was more than 25%. Arts education is important for DC students on the cusp of succeeding and equally necessary for students on the cusp of failure. Performing and fine arts education supports career development in graphic arts, culinary arts, fine arts, media, journalism, and related fields and also supports development of important student character assets. DC’s investment in arts education should take into account that outcomes of arts education include not only skills development, but reduction in the dropout rate.


We advocate for full funding of ongoing and immersive arts education opportunities for all DC students.


Arts education is crucial to our children’s intellectual and social development and should be provided for all students, not just the privileged few. Education Policy analyst Tina Beveridge argues, “If we marginalize all non-tested subjects, we create a system in which only the affluent members of our society have access to the most comprehensive and well-rounded educations, which widens the achievement gap rather than closes it.” When some classes and schools are treated as lesser than other classes and schools through denial of arts opportunity those students have less of a chance to succeed. Supporting the Arts in Education is essential to the development of the District’s students, citizens, and workforce.


Are you a parent? Join our group, “Parents for Arts Education in DC Schools” on facebook.


From the Arts Education Partnership: “School administrators report that in schools with powerful arts programs, they see increased student performance as measured by grades, test scores, attendance and retention. Partnerships with community arts organizations and individual artists can engage the expertise of community members in ways that enhance student learning.”


Additional Resources:

The Americans for the Arts Arts Education Network provides information on arts education advocacy, research, publications and services as well as information on arts education in public schools.  Its National Arts Education Awareness Campaign provides facts about art education and campaign updates.


The Education Commission of the States provides links to arts education reports, interviews with policy makers and school superintendents, an art education policy database and an overview of arts education in Arkansas.


The Center for Arts Education is committed to stimulating and sustaining arts education in New York public schools. The site covers its work and programs supporting arts education, and provides links to arts education resources.


New Horizons for Learning provides links to art education resources and articles on arts education.


The International Society for Education through Arts provides links to a wide array of international arts education initiatives as well as reports from congresses and symposiums.


The National Assembly of State Arts Organizations provides links to arts education publications.


The International Journal of Education and the Arts is an online journal covering diverse topics in arts education.


The National Endowment for the Arts is committed to providing leadership in arts education, and funds opportunities in arts education.


The Dana Foundation offers arts education grants. The site provides profiles of its grantees as well as arts education reports, publications and recommended reading of arts education in the news.