Let Rippleside Children Keep Art Classes

Let Rippleside Children Keep Art Classes

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Andrea G started this petition to anyone who believes in the importance of art for elementary students

Aitkin Public School has an upcoming school board meeting that includes the discussion of cutting Rippleside Elementary School's art program.

This has countless residents, families, and students feeling disheartened, as so many of us understand the importance of art in our world. 

Not only is art class a place where a student can enhance their creativity, fine motor skills, and confidence - it is a chance to give their brains a break from numbers and letters that dominate their day. It is a chance to be immersed in beauty, self-expression, and culture. 

Within the Art room walls of Rippleside, you can find vibrant celebrations and education of various cultures from around the globe - which is an increasing need in children's education as our community is growing more diverse by day.

As students filter through the door, their eyes light up when they see the tools and materials displayed in front of them that they can soon use to let their imagination run wild. Their minds race with excitement when given work that doesn't have to be verbatim to be beautiful. 

There was a report by Americans for the Arts that showed students who participate regularly in the arts are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, to participate in a math and science fair or to win an award for writing an essay or poem than children who do not participate. This is obviously a benefit we all would like to see!

The school's administration presented the idea to the school board to get rid of art class as one of their cuts and feel that it is acceptable to give be a block of time during the week in class where regular classroom teachers would facilitate an art session. Though it is great that they aren't saying get rid of art completely - we must understand that teachers are already being face with impossible mountains of work and expectations as it is. Teachers who are already in need of teacher's assistants in their room but are denied that. Teachers who work far beyond what their salary 'hours' are set at. Teachers who spend countless dollars out of pocket to get their classrooms the items they need. Teachers who didn't major in art or have no interest and would struggle to teach it with the same kind of passion.

Having the student's art session within their classroom also poses problems like storage space for tools and products, projects in the works, and the fact that they are all carpeted (something tells me the overworked and underappreciated janitorial staff wouldn't love the battle of removing ground in clay, paint, and glue out of the carpets.) In regards to clay - one of the most highly anticipated and enjoyable projects Rippleside students ever get to partake in -  I believe that would be scrapped all together. I don't foresee more than one kiln or having every single teacher know how to properly and safely run one.  

Another issue that fits within this frightening proposal is the fact that the elementary grade levels will each be cut from having 4 teachers down to 3. This means even larger class numbers, which has only proven detrimental to students as the ability for one-on-one time gets even smaller and tension climbs higher. 

We have to help fight for children to keep this treasured time within their schoolyear.

By signing this petition, you are helping to keep art within the walls of Rippleside to be cherished for years to come. 

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,000!
At 1,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!