Updates Underway on National Standards for Arts Education: State Arts Action Network Drives Advocacy to Adopt New Standards in all 50 States

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“If we don’t update the standards to meet the needs of current educational priorities, the arts risk being marginalized in American schools, limiting our young people’s access and opportunity to a full and balanced education.”

When the standards were drafted in 1994, Americans for the Arts led the initial advocacy effort in all 50 states to adopt them. The organization will collaborate with NCCAS leadership in a similar capacity, this time activating its State Arts Action Network—which consists of arts education leaders in all 50 states—to drive state-level advocacy efforts to endorse, adopt and adapt the 2014 National Core Arts Standards as the recognized model of quality arts education throughout the United States.

“I am excited to continue our work to advance arts education in state policy and further strengthen the arts as a strategy in the education reform efforts taking place across the country,” noted Lynch.

Lynn Tuttle, President of the State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education (SEADAE) and an NCCAS leadership team member, said she was delighted that Americans for the Arts has become a partner in the standards project. “NCCAS is thrilled that Americans for the Arts has joined the coalition. Currently, 48 states have adopted arts standards. Their support is an important boost to the new standards’ credibility and will strengthen our effort to gain widespread endorsement and adoption in the states.”

Americans for the Arts is the latest organization to join the broad coalition of stakeholders developing the new standards. The group hopes to create a product that will reflect and encompass the most current research in the arts education field, national and international developments in education, and policy directions, including Common Core State Standards and the drive to develop 21st century skills.

Other NCCAS leadership organizations include the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, The College Board, National Art Education Association, National Dance Education Organization, Educational Theatre Association, National Association for Music Education, State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education, Young Audiences and arts educational leaders in the field of media arts.

The new standards will be released in March, 2014. A review of the draft K-8 standards was completed in July; NCCAS will be issuing a call for public review of the draft high school standards on September 30. Interested individuals should visit the coalition’s website at nccas.wikispaces.com or the NCCAS Facebook page at facebook.com/NationalCoalitionForCoreArtsStandards to learn how they can participate in the review process, and for other information about the project.

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