This statement of support for arts education has been reviewed and endorsed by the signatories listed below.
It is imperative that all students have access to an equitable delivery of arts education that includes dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts that supports their educational, social, and emotional well-being, taught by certified professional arts educators in partnership with community arts providers.
Teaching and learning will never quite be the same in our post-COVID-19 world. However, our commitment to provide rich and varied educational experiences remains unwavering. The arts have played an important role in these tumultuous times and will continue to do so for all students, including the traditionally underrepresented, those with special needs, and from low-income families. Here’s why:
Arts education supports the social and emotional well-being of students, whether through distance learning or in person.
Self-awareness, self-efficacy, self-management and perseverance, social awareness and relationship skills are central to any arts education activity, no matter the age and ability of the student or the environment in which the learning takes place. The arts, with their strong emphasis on team-building and self-reflection are supremely suited to re-ignite students’ interest in learning through collaboration, while simultaneously fostering creativity, critical thinking, and communication.
Arts education nurtures the creation of a welcoming school environment where students can express themselves in a safe and positive way.
Celebrating our ability to come together as educators and students is vital to creating a healthy and inclusive school community. The arts, through a rich partnership among certified arts educators, teaching artists, and community arts providers, play a valuable role in helping students and their families build and sustain community and cultural connections.
Arts education is part of a well-rounded education for all students as understood and supported by federal and state policymakers.
As defined in ESSA, “music and the arts” are part of a well-rounded education. Every state in the nation recognizes the importance of the arts as reflected in rigorous PreK-12 state arts standards. Forty-six states require an arts credit to receive a high school diploma, and 43 states have instructional requirements in the arts for elementary and secondary schools. As noted in Arts Education for America’s Students: A Shared Endeavor: “An education without the arts is inadequate.”
The healing and unifying power of the arts has been evident as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the country. We have seen and heard it play out through works of art on sidewalks, shared musical moments from porches, in plays and dance performances, and every other imaginable iteration of art making. As states and schools work through multiple challenges in the years ahead, arts education must remain central to a well-rounded education and fully funded to support the wellbeing of all students and the entire school community.
National Endorsing Organizations I
American Choral Directors Association
American Composers Forum
American Orff-Schulwerk Association
Americans for the Arts
American String Teachers Association
Barbershop Harmony Society
Casio America, Inc.
College Band Directors National Association
Eastman Music Company
Education Through Music
Educational Theatre Association
Give a Note Foundation
Historically Black Colleges and Universities
National Band Directors’ Consortium
Jazz at Lincoln Center
Jazz Education Network
League of American Orchestras
Little Kids Rock
Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation
Music for All
Music Teachers National Association
National Art Education Association
National Association for Music Education
National Association of Elementary School Principals
National Association of Secondary School Principals
National Coalition for Core Arts Standards
National Dance Education Organization
National Education Association
National Federation of State High School
National YoungArts Foundation
Organization of American Kodály Educators
Save The Music Foundation
State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education
The Rock and Roll Forever Foundation
United Sound, Inc.
Varsity Performing Arts
West Music Company
Yamaha Corporation of America
Young Audiences Arts for Learning
National Endorsing Organizations II
American Alliance for Theatre & Education
American Bandmasters Association
American Dance Therapy Association
American Music Therapy Association
American School Band Directors Association
Arts Schools Network
BandLab for Education
Breezin’ Thru, Inc.
DeMoulin Bros. & Co
Educational Tours, Inc.
Excelcia Music Publishing
GRAMMY Music Education Coalition
Kappa Kappa Psi
Lesbian and Gay Band Association
Macie Publishing Company
Manhattan Concert Productions
MFR Holdings, LLC
Music and the Brain
National Association of School Music Dealers
National Dance Institute
National Dance Society
National Music Council
National Organization for Arts in Health
Newport Festivals Foundation
Nuvo Instrumental, LLC
Retail Print Music Dealers Association
Soundtrap for Education
Sweet Adelines International
Tau Beta Sigma
Teaching Artists Guild
Teaching for Artistic Behavior
Teaching With Orff
Ted Brown Music
The Midwest Clinic
The mPowered Music Educator Academy
The Musical Theatre Educators’ Alliance
The National Association of Professional Band Instrument Repair Technicians
The Society for Online Music Education
The Suzuki Association of the Americas
Theatre Communications Group
TI:ME- Technology in Music Education
Todd Rundgren’s Spirit of Harmony Foundation
WGI Sport of the Arts
State Endorsing Organizations
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