California Educator

September 2013

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Page 10 of 71

FFEATUREE E ATU R BY SHERRY POSNICK-GOODWIN Over the past 30 years, arts education has been steadily disappearing as education budgets have been slashed. But that's not the only reason. As schools felt increasing pressure to spend more time on the high-stakes testing categories of reading and math, curriculum narrowed in focus, leading to a significant reduction in the amount of time spent on arts and music instruction. In poorer school districts these types of courses have been eliminated altogether, while in more affluent districts parents fund the arts programs. Thanks to the passage of Prop. 30, for the first time in six years California's economy is on the upswing and school districts can begin restoring many of the programs they had eliminated — many of which were in the arts. In fact, over the next seven years, our schools and colleges will see an influx of $42 billion. "This new money coming into our schools gives us, as education advocates, a real opportunity to ensure a well-rounded education for all students," says CTA President Dean E. Vogel. "Bringing the arts back to students in our poorest communities can help level the learning field." So, in addition to more resources, we came up with five reasons to bring back the arts — with some help from our members and their students in San Ramon, Downey, Compton and Rocklin. Of course, these aren' t all the reasons. PHOTOGRAPHY BY SCOTT BUSCHMAN Educator 09 Sep 2013 v3.6 int.indd 9 SEP TEMBER 201 3 9 9/3/13 2:25 PM

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