Get Streamlined Arts Funding for NYC Public Schools!
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According to multiple sources, the arts benefit children, their academic achievement, health, social development, and future success. However, in New York, a city that spends more dollars per pupil than any other state, many schools lack at least full time, certified arts teacher and have no designated art classroom. This is even more true in low-income neighborhoods.
While arts education has definitely improved under the jurisdiction of NYC Chancellor Carmen Fariña, and her efforts are undoubtedly a step in the right direction, they are not enough for two primary reasons. First, according to a report put out by NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer, 10% of schools had no dedicated arts room in 2013. Thus schools just don’t have the space to provide proper arts educations for their students. Chancellor Fariña’s plan hardly addresses this issue. As the student population rises in an already overpopulated city, this problem likely still exists today.
Second, in 2013, The Arts Advisory Committee called for the DOE to reinstate a dedicated funding line for the arts, noting that arts education grew while a dedicated funding line (Project ARTS) was in place and has stagnated since it disappeared. Such a funding line still does not exist. Implementing one would likely allow for arts education to grow, and for resources to be allocated towards space and staff. Thus, while Chancellor Fariña’s efforts are recognized and appreciated, there are still pressing factors which must be addressed.
Ultimately, arts education fits seamlessly into a much bigger picture - one in which providing children with the resources they need to lead happy and healthy lives is weighed against the restrictive, standardized education system that has been created. In the end, the arts has the ability to impact a student’s success and health - whether they go on to college, or how susceptible they are to depression. Just listen the three students talk about how art has impacted their lives in the video above!
By denying a student a proper arts education, the world may be preventing a future expert in their field from reaching his or her full potential. Thus, arts education should be treated as an issue of urgency, instead of one pushed to the side.
I hope this video - one in which three NYC public school students, and one NYC public school teacher talk about their art experience at a school in Central Harlem - shows you just how urgent this issue is.
Signatures collected will be sent NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, and NY Governor Andrew Cuomo - all key people in the education funding hierarchy - in hopes of getting more streamlined arts funding for NYC Public Schools.
Sign and share this petition to make a difference in the lives of students around the city.
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