Arts Education: Creating Student Success in School Work and Life directly communicates the benefits of arts education to policymakers. More than 60 organizations are signatories on this unified statement – and they represent an impressive cross-section of stakeholders in federal education policy.
Here is a brief statement included in that document:
A child’s education is not complete unless it includes the arts. In fact, the No Child Left Behind Act lists the arts among the core academic subjects, requiring schools to enable all students to achieve in the arts, and to reap the full benefits of a comprehensive arts education. In spite of this federal direction, access to arts education in our schools is eroding. A report from the Center for Education Policy conclude that, since the enactment of No Child Left Behind, 22% of school districts surveyed have reduced instructional time for art and music… A comprehensive strategy for a complete education includes rigorous, sequential arts instruction in the classroom, as well as participation and learning in available community-based arts programs. Public schools have the responsibility for providing a complete education for all children, meeting the commitment put forth in No Child Left Behind. The federal commitment to arts education must be strengthened so that the arts are implemented as a part of the core curriculum of our nation’s schools and are an integral part of every child’s development.