Will you invest five minutes for arts education?

WHY:  States have more power and flexibility in how they will implement the provisions outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  Now is the time for Florida citizens to speak up, and ask that arts education policies and access to funding are included in Florida's ESSA Accountability Plan.  Florida's Department of Education seeks public input before July 22.  Please review this email for easy and quick steps you and others can take, suggested arts education policy recommendations, and the link to the online-public-input survey.  Please act now before this opportunity for public input closes on July 22.


Below are Easy and Quick Steps You Can Take Before July 22. 

It's our responsibility to engage in this planning process, and ask the Florida Department of Education and our local school districts to consider the inclusion of these recommendations in the Florida and local ESSA Accountability Implementation Plan/s.

Number 1
Access below the Florida Department of Education ESSA Public Input Survey:  http://www.fldoe.org/academics/essa.stml.

Number 2
On survey, click #8 General Comments by Title of the Act; complete name, etc; then cursor down to Title VIII - General Provisions.

Number 3
Share one or more of the recommendations listed below: copy and paste, edit, combine, or create your own.

Number 4
Ask your local school district if it has an ESSA planning team, and ask for their support of these recommendations.

Number 5
Please share this request with others who will speak up for arts education.

Below are recommendations that qualify for support in ESSA; HOWEVER, we must ask the Florida Department of Education BEFORE July 22, 2016, to consider the inclusion of these suggested policies for arts education in Florida's ESSA Accountability Plan:

A well-rounded education that includes all the arts prepares students
for success in school, higher education, the workforce, and
life-long engagement in their communities and in learning.

The Florida Department of Education ESSA Accountability Plan should

1.  clearly define in writing that the "arts" include the subjects dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts as part of ESSA's definition of courses, activities, and programs for a "well-rounded" education; Note:  the term "all-arts-defined" referenced below means all five of these arts disciplines listed above;

2.  include eligibility access to Title I funds for all-arts-defined programs that address the needs of and goals for standards-based learning for academically at-risk students;

3.  include eligibility access to Title II funds for professional development for all-arts-defined teachers,teaching artists, principals, and other educators involved in the development and implementation of instructional delivery for grades Pre-K through 12;

4.  include eligibility access to Title IV 21st Century Schools and Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants for school and community partnerships that utilize one or more of the all-arts-defined courses, activities, and programs to improve students' academic achievement by increasing the capacity of  Florida's Department of Education, local educational agencies, schools, and local communities to provide
all students with access to a well-rounded education;

5.  encourage full participation from Florida in the federal Assistance for Arts Education Grants Program that involves professional development for teachers; development and dissemination of arts-based educational programming in multiple arts disciplines; and national outreach activities that strengthen partnerships among local education agencies, local arts and cultural  organizations, and national centers for the arts;

6.  include in Florida's Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) at least one measure of student engagement, attendance, and academic achievement through participation in one or more of the all-arts-defined subjects;

7.  support the integration of one or more of the all-arts-defined-arts subjects into programs and activities that increase participation in STEM to improve attainment of STEM-related skills and promote a well-rounded education;

8.  include assessments and evaluation systems for student achievement in the all-arts-defined subjects;

9.  support policies and funding-eligibility support for Pre-K education that includes all-arts-defined subjects;

10.  integrate all the defined-arts courses, activities, and programs into other goals established in ESSA, such as average daily attendance; evidence-based programs; graduation rates; literacy programs for low-performing students and English-learning students and families; engagement of parents, students, and community partners; school improvement, identity, and engagement; preparation for today's and tomorrow's workforce, careers, and higher education; expanded learning time in and out of school; Exceptional Student Education (ESE) programs for children with intellectual and developmental disabilities; programs for gifted and talented students; programs that prepare Pre-K students for greater engagement and effective learning and success in their future school experiences; etc.

If you need additional information or have questions,  
please email FCA at info@FLCA.net.

Florida Cultural Alliance
Post Office Box 2131
West Palm Beach, FL 33402-2131
561-848-6231        info@FLCA.net        www.FLCA.net