Letters to the Editor

Arts Education: Planning for the Future

What do the visual arts, performing arts, music and dance have to do with education? Everything.

Reports from the U.S. Department of Labor urge schools to teach for the workplace of the future; a workplace that calls for skills such as the capacity for working with teams, communication, creative thinking, self esteem, imagination and invention.

To quote Richard S. Gurin from Business and the Arts: A Necessary Partnership, “In other words, high-quality arts education programs represent the best chance to develop the future management talent that corporations in the United States need to be competitive on a global basis.”

As part of a collaborative effort to enhance arts education, the San Juan Island School District and the Islands Museum of Art & Sculpture Park are conducting a survey and inviting the SJI community to participate. The collected information will be used for planning and acquiring funding for future programs and arts instruction in the district.

Anyone who has an interest in arts education is encouraged to participate. Parents, especially — we’d like to hear from you.

A link to the online survey can be found on the district website at www.sjisd.wednet.edu under “Announcements” on the left navigation bar. It will take about 15 minutes to complete.

You may not have knowledge about all the areas covered. That’s OK. Just mark those questions with “don’t know”. From this we will learn where better communication is needed.

Thanks to the following organizations for their funding and support of this effort:  SJI Community Foundation, Washington State Arts Commission, FHES PTA, SJICF Women’s Fund, Leo J. Shapiro & Associates, and the San Juan County Arts Council.

For more information contact Maude Cumming at the San Juan Island School District or Peg Gerlock, IMA education chair at directorsjima@gmail.com.

Peg Gerlock/San Juan Island


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