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National Endowment for the Arts and Illinois Arts Council Select Eight Teams for Education Leaders Institute Alumni Summit, December 12-14, 2012

Summit represents first step in new arts education vision for NEA

Washington, DC -- On September 13, 2012 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Rocco Landesman outlined a bold, new vision for the NEA's commitment to arts education.

The arts need to be front and center as part of every school reform strategy. We cannot just focus on a few, select subjects and expect students and teachers to succeed. We need to invest holistically and completely. . . You are going to see an Arts Endowment that works to ensure that every student is engaged and empowered through exemplary arts education. And you will see us positioning arts education as a driver for transforming students, schools, and communities.

As part of that move towards an expanded arts education profile, the NEA, in partnership with the Illinois Arts Council, is convening the Education Leaders Institute Alumni Summit in order to leverage the experience and knowledge gained by alumni participants.

The Summit will take place December 12-14, 2012 and will include eight, two-member state teams from the 29 state teams that participated in previous Institutes. Team members are state department of education officials, governor's cabinet members, superintendents, district-level school leaders, artists, arts advocates, philanthropists, or business leaders. The teams will be charged with thinking about ways to use their networks for collective impact, and how that collective impact might implicate K-12 education policy.

The teams are:

  • Alabama State Council on the Arts
  • California Arts Council
  • Louisiana School for Math and Sciences
  • Missouri Arts Council
  • Nebraska Arts Council
  • North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
  • Oklahoma A+ Schools at the University of Central Oklahoma
  • Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

Following the Education Leaders Institute Alumni Summit, the NEA will distribute a briefing report outlining the results of the teams' discussions. The report will be a resource for guiding the national conversation about improving K-12 learning by advancing the arts as a core element of education.

Since 2008, six Education Leaders Institutes have been held in Chicago with a total of 29 state teams. For those Institutes, each team discussed an arts education challenge in their state and created strategies to strengthen their state's arts education policies around that shared challenge. To advance the level of discussion, thought leaders from the arts education field worked with teams one-on-one to challenge their thinking on policy and implementation. With knowledge gained, teams returned to their states to implement what they had learned.

Arts education resources available on the NEA website include:

The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA atarts.gov