Arts Orange County




OC School Board Candidate Arts Education Survey Results Released


SANTA ANA, CA - OCTOBER 6, 2010:    Today, Arts Orange County (ArtsOC) posted the results of an arts education survey of candidates for School Board in 24 school districts with contested seats in Orange County in the November 2 election.  Responses were received from 75 of the more than 120 candidates.  ArtsOC conducted the survey as the local partner of the statewide California Alliance for Arts Education (CAAE), and in collaboration with the Fourth District PTA (PTA). 


Every candidate for school board in every Orange County school district election this November was asked to respond to four questions about the role of the visual and performing arts in public schools. The survey is intended to help voters gain a deeper understanding of candidates' views on this issue before the election.


The results are posted on the Internet at these links by School District*: 


In Orange County, there are 11 communities with Local Arts Education Alliances.  Find out more about them here.


For a list of candidates' survey responses from elsewhere around the state, click here.


For State Superintendent of Public Instruction candidates' survey responses, click here.


* Only candidates in Orange County districts with contested seats were surveyed.  Some candidates did not respond to the survey, and these are noted in each district's list.



"Because decisions about resources for academic programs in the public schools are increasingly being made at the local level, voters need to know where school board candidates stand on preserving the arts curriculum," commented Richard Stein, ArtsOC's Executive Director.


"It's easy to be enthusiastic about the arts, but this survey asks candidates to go on record with concrete ideas about the role they see for arts education," says Laurie Schell, Executive Director of CAAE. "Their leadership will have an important impact on what happens in classrooms."


ArtsOC serves as the local leader in partnership with the PTA as part of the CAAE's Local Advocacy Network Project, which empowers local communities to advocate for arts education in their schools. The election provides an opportunity to spotlight the value of visual and performing arts programs.


Advocates from Orange, San Diego and Sonoma Counties as well as from San Diego Unified have surveyed candidates in over fifty districts. State-wide Partners for this project include Arts Orange County, 4th District PTA, The Arts Education Alliance of Sonoma County, Escondido Alliance for Arts Education, San Diego Alliance for Arts Education, South Bay Alliance for Arts Education, Tuolumne Alliance for Arts Education.



1.       What meaningful experiences with the arts (visual arts, dance, drama and/or music) did you have growing up?


2.       What role do you think the arts can play in supporting key education priorities such as closing the achievement gap, reducing the dropout rate and preparing more students for college eligibility and the 21st century workforce?


3.       A standards-based arts curriculum is one of the five core subjects in NCLB ("No Child Left Behind") and critical for developing job skills vital in the creative economy and the 21st century workforce.  Yet, most often only "what is tested is taught" in our schools. How do you envision bringing balance back for a comprehensive education and ensuring that all students have access to a quality, standards-based arts education curriculum?


4.       If elected, how will you engage classroom teachers, arts teachers, parents and community arts organizations to shape your agenda for arts education or implement your district's strategic arts plan?


Arts Orange County and 4th District PTA have provided leadership to build local alliances for arts education and PTA Arts Advocates at every school site. For a list of local alliances and who to contact, go to


The California Alliance for Arts Education is in its fourth decade of working to build a brighter future for our state by making the arts a core part of every child's quality education. A statewide leader and convener, the Alliance galvanizes California's abundance of arts and culture experts to advocate for quality arts education for all students. By collaborating effectively with the state's leading education and parent engagement agencies and providing an anchor for policy expertise at the state and local levels, the Alliance is the leader in promoting the arts in schools and enriching the lives of children, families and communities. To learn more, visit