Sunday, March 20, 2011

Federal: Tell Congress to Support Arts in Education

Reflections of a Dance School Dropout

At the beginning of a new calendar year, everyone resolves to get healthy, eat better, and exercise more. I myself know my limitations when it comes to exercise. I’m limited in that I don’t like it. I also have an aversion to sweat.

So this past January I decided to get creative. I thought about what type of exercise I would most enjoy. I wanted to try an activity that wouldn’t seem like exercise at all. Then remembered my teen years and how much I loved my dance classes. I could again be a dancer, exercising in a way that would be fun and calorie- burning at the same time.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Arts Education for Minority Children Drops

Art-Less Generation A new survey finds
that 18- to 24-year-olds received significantly less
arts education that did the previous
generation of young people. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

We need to Join Education Votes

In 30 minutes on March 9, Wisconsin Republicans shredded 50 years of labor peace, bipartisanship, and Wisconsin's democratic process by ramming through an unpopular bill to silence the voice of state workers. Their actions sparked outrage in Madison Wednesday night and sent shockwaves across the country. Republicans in Idaho and Ohio have already voted for similar anti-worker bills like the one in Wisconsin -- and attacks are being waged in other states. In Iowa - Florida - Indiana - Michigan - Tennessee - from Alabama to Arizona, our members are fighting to retain their voice in the workplace...fighting for students...fighting for public schools.

We do not run away from a fight! Brad Lutes, a WEAC member from Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, says it best: "We can't be defeated. There's not really an alternative. You can take away my collective bargaining rights. You can take away my pension and some of my health care, but the one thing you can't take away from me is my vote. I think that's how a large majority of Wisconsinites and Americans feel right now."

Now is the time for every NEA member to stand up and stand fight for what we know is right, what is fair, and for what we all deserve. Go to Education Votes to get involved and stay informed.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Arts Education Funding Cut in Two-Week Budget Fix

March 03, 2011—Although Congress quickly avoided a government shutdown this week, arts education funding somehow managed to get caught up in the two-week continuing resolution Band-Aid that was passed by both the House and Senate yesterday.

While the Continuing Resolution (CR) keeps the government running for another two weeks, it also makes a $4 billion cut in domestic spending, including a number of federal education programs.
Among the programs designated for cuts is the total elimination of funding for the Department of Education’s $40 million Arts in Education program. This program funds a large number of arts education activities across in the country, including the Kennedy Center’s arts education efforts and VSA, the international organization on arts and disability.

It is unclear at the moment of how a short-term CR might impact a program that currently has over 50 active multi-year grants in place around the country. However, this can be fixed in the upcoming long-term CR that Congress and the White House are currently negotiating.

It is vitally important that the arts community mobilizes to restore this important Arts in Education program, as well as restore the cuts previously made in the House to the National Endowment for the Arts, as the final FY 2011 CR budget is considered in the coming days.
Tim Mikulski, ArtsBlog