Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Arts Advocacy for October

What do the current presidential candidates think of the arts? The Americans for the Arts Action Fund has released a side by side comparison of both candidate’s positions. Go to: http://www.artsactionfund.org/pdf/press/McCain_Obama_record_final.pdf for a short summary. Additional links are there if you want more detail.

Note the recent release of the Coalition for Theatre Education’s Joint statement on Freedom of Expression in the Arts. This coalition was formed two years ago by members of the American Alliance for Theatre and Education (AATE), the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE), and the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA) to address issues of mutual interest and concern in theatre education. The CFTE represents more than 7,000 theatre educators in American elementary, middle, and high schools, colleges, and universities. You can read this important statement on Freedom of Expression in the Arts by going to: http://www.athe.org/resources/advocacyinfobank/cfteexpression

If you still don’t have enough new things to read, I recommend a fascinating publication titled Committing to Quality in Education: Arts at the Core just released by the Illinois Arts Allance. It is designed for Illinois teachers, principals, superintendents, parents, and community partners. You can find this superbly illustrated publication at: http://www.artsalliance.org/docs/QualityInEducation.pdf Chapter topics include “Curriculum and Assessment,” “Accountability,” and “Planning for Effective Arts Education.” Ra Joy, the Executive Director of the IAA and his Guidebook project directors, Julie Andrianopoli and Lara Pruitt have performed a truly magnificent service in compiling this publication.

The Congressional Arts Report Card for the 110th Congress is available and you can read it at: http://www.artsactionfund.org/pdf/special_reports/2008/Rpt_Card_2008.pdf According to the Arts Report Card, the cumulative grade point average of the Illinois delegation is a B+ for 2007 to 2009. The last Arts Report Card in 2006 issued Illinois a B grade. The Illinois delegation ranks 17th highest among all state delegations.

The Illinois Arts Friendly Community Awards serve to recognize municipalities that support the arts and to celebrate municipal leaders who use the arts to build healthy communities. They are awarded by the Arts Alliance of Illinois and the Illinois Municipal League. Arlington Heights and Effingham, IL were among those honored this year. Fifteen other communities captured Honorable Mentions. They were Aurora, Bartlett, Belvidere, Carol Stream, Danville, Elmwood Park, Hickory Hills, Highland Park, Hoffman Estates, Lombard, Orland Park, Palatine, Princeton, Tinley Park, Urbana, and Waukegan. Might your community be eligible? Check it out at: http://www.artsalliance.org/lac_awards.shtml

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