The AEI Note: June 29, 2012 

Arts and Education News from the Education Policy and Leadership Center  
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Greetings from The Education Policy and Leadership Center.  


I write to you for the final time as Director of the Arts and Education Initiative from my Harrisburg office.  Although I will continue working on a number of AEI projects, (including this year's Arts and Education Symposium, which will take place on Thursday, October 11!) I am leaving Harrisburg and will begin doctoral studies in Art Education this August.   Please help me to give a warm welcome to Erin Gough and Laura Abbott--two new staffers at EPLC working on AEI. 


It's been a pleasure to meet so many amazing individuals laboring so creatively on behalf of all types of learners, and in support of the arts.  I am inspired by the movement we have begun to bring the arts and arts education to the forefront of public policy discourse and decision making in Pennsylvania!  


Please be in touch with any questions or suggestions about AEI by contacting Erin, our new AEI Manager, via email:  I will be available at:



Warm regards,

Jordan Crosby Signature                    

Jordan Crosby

Director, Arts and Education Initiative


P.S. Did you know that you can read past editions of the AEI Note online by visiting 



Pennsylvania Budget Update   

2012-13 Budget Approved by House and Senate
With the constitutional budget deadline rapidly approaching on June 30, legislators in the House and Senate have passed a $27.7 billion budget that Governor Corbett is expected to sign late tonight or tomorrow.

What 2012-13 Budget Means for Arts and Education    K-12 funding is increased slightly from last year.  Legislators rejected the governor's proposed $100 million cut for Accountability Block Grant funding and also added to Basic Education funding nearly $50 million to be distributed as distressed school supplements to 16 districts. Other than adding the distressed school supplements, the new budget does not restore the nearly $900 million cut from state funding to school districts in 2011-12.

Also included in the budget is a 11.1% increase from $360,000 to $400,000 in the federal appropriation for the administration of NEA Grants to the Arts program facilitated through the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. The state funding for Pennsylvania Council on the Arts will stay level with last year with $886,000 for administrative costs and $8.179 million for arts grants.

For complete Budget information, click here.

For information about allocations to each school district,
click here.


 AEI and EPLC News  

Changes at EPLC
This month, we welcome two new staff members at EPLC, and Jordan Crosby will wrap up her full-time work as Director of AEI.  Jordan will continue contributing to the Initiative as a consulting writer and event planner.  This August she will begin the doctoral program in Art Education at Penn State University's School of Visual Arts, and she will also work on museum education programming at the Palmer Museum of Art

Recent CMU Master of Arts Management graduate Erin Gough has started full-time work at EPLC as Manager of AEI, and she will also coordinate the new Pennsylvania Arts Education Network.  Laura Abbott is EPLC's new part-time Research Assistant, and elements of her work will contribute to AEI and the Network.  Laura just graduated from Millersville University, where she received degrees in Art Education and Painting. 

Arts Education Network - Statewide Conference Call
Building on the AEI report released on March 14, EPLC has been working with other organizations to plan a new coalition supporting effective arts education policies at the state and school district levels.  One of the activities of the new PA Arts Education Network will be monthly statewide conference calls to provide updates about important arts education issues and events.

The Network convened the first statewide conference call on June 14th, 2012 to discuss proposed activities of the Network, the state arts and education budget, news from its partners, and activity at the recent Americans for the Arts 2012 Convention. 

You may listen to any portion of a recording of the one-hour call by dialing 1-888-899-7904, then entering 127879166#.   The Network will soon be represented with a newsletter, website, and Facebook page, and its participants will help to develop unified messages and strategies to strengthen arts education in our state.  If you are interested in finding more details about the Network, and participating in future calls, please email Coordinator Erin Gough: 

Save the Date: 2012 Arts and Education Symposium
Please mark your calendars and plan on joining us--as well as arts and education leaders from across Pennsylvania and the nation--for the 2012 Arts and Education Symposium, which will take place in Harrisburg on October 11.  Stay tuned to in the coming months for updates on Symposium content and registration information.  


Arts Leaders, Apply Now to 2012-2013 Class of EPFP 

The Education Policy Fellowship Program (EPFP) is a nationally recognized professional development program for individuals whose work record reflects strong leadership abilities and a concern for issues important to children and education in Pennsylvania.  Participants develop a broadened understanding of education policy issues and the policymaking process, expand their network of professional colleagues, and hone their skills in communications and leadership.  As well as attending dynamic monthly seminars in Harrisburg during the ten-month period, Fellows complete a group policy project, travel to Washington D.C., conduct legislative visits, and participate in an additional, regional leadership forum with Fellows from several other states.  Applicants are full-time professionals from an array of organizations at the local, state, and national levels with at least a bachelor's degree (or its equivalent) and a strong commitment to learn.  Find out more about the program and how to apply on EPLC's website.  


 Policy News 


Senate Passes Museum Resolution to Study Resources  

On June 4, the Pennsylvania Senate unanimously adopted SR 268.   The resolution "directs the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to conduct a study of the museums in this Commonwealth and research and evaluate how funding and resources are allocated for this Commonwealth's museums."  The study is to be completed 90 days after the adoption of the resolution and PA Museums (formerly the Pennsylvania Federation of Museums and Historical Organizations) has expressed support of its implementation.   


 Arts and Education News 

New Data Available about Arts Impact in PA 

Citizens for the Arts is Pennsylvania has released a new study from Americans for the Arts: Arts and Economic Prosperity (IV) in the State of Pennsylvania. This is the most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts industry in Pennsylvania ever completed.  Highlights include:

  • The nonprofit arts are a $2.55 billion industry in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
  • Pennsylvania's nonprofit arts sector supports over 81,000 full-time jobs.
  • Nonprofit arts in Pennsylvania generate $360 million in state and local tax revenue, yearly. 

Arts Graduates Speak up about Education & Careers 

A national study released during June shows that Americans with arts degrees are generally satisfied with their educational and career experiences.  For example, nearly nine out of 10 employed arts graduates responding to the survey are satisfied with the job they spend the majority of their work time in.  Of those employed alumni, 82 percent were satisfied with their ability to be creative in their current work, whether working in the arts or in other fields.

The report,  A Diverse Palette: What Arts Graduates Say About Their Education and Careers, details findings from more than 36,000 arts alumni of 66 institutions.  Participating schools include research universities, independent colleges of art and design, conservatories, liberal arts colleges, and arts high schools.  The Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP), which oversaw the research, is a collaboration between the  Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research and the Vanderbilt University Curb Center for Art, Enterprise and Public Policy.  


AEC Publishes "Translations" on Prominent Research 

Western Pennsylvania's Arts Education Collaborative (AEC) is producing a new, biannual arts education publication.  These monographs are designed to analyze contemporary educational research into concise summaries, and to explore possible applications of the findings for organizations and educators.  The Translations   
series is designed to help key research make its way into school districts and classrooms, and into cultural organizations and the broader community.  The subject of the AEC's first Translations monograph is a 2009 study conducted by Harvard's Project Zero about excellence in arts education.  

Increased Arts and Education Advocacy in June

As Pennsylvania's General Assembly worked to advance a state budget, many school districts and cultural organizations have been making tough decisions about key programs that impact students and communities on a regular basis.  With the June 30 budget deadline looming, hundreds of parents, students and community members gathered to voice their concerns about public education funding in the Governor's proposed 2012-2013 budget


The Save Upper Darby Arts campaign held a rally at the state capitol on June 6.  The district was facing a $13 million deficit, prompting proposed cuts to the arts, library and physical education in the elementary schools, and technology and foreign languages in the middle schools.  A petition currently has over 18,400 signatures and the support of Philadelphia native, comedian Tina Fey.  On June 26, the School Board reached a vote on the final budget, and according to NBC news, of 57 furloughed teachers, 19 will be re-instated. 15 are music, arts, and physical education elementary school teachers.  


On June 13, the Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) led a rally in the Capitol Rotunda to protest the Governor's proposed education budget.  Hundreds of classroom and arts teachers, including those who were furloughed from Reading, Pocono, and York City School Districts, were in attendance.