Art Education Alert from Illinois Art Education Association, President Joan Mills
Right now is a time of unprecedented activity in art and education in Illinois. As the president of the Illinois Art Education Association, I want to share some vital information with all my visual arts educator colleagues. First and foremost, the Illinois State Board of Education, in partnership with Arts Alliance Illinois, launched a review of the National Arts Education Standards http://nationalartsstandards.org for either adoption or adaption as updated Illinois Fine Arts Learning Standards. The August 27th announcement from ISBE can be found at http://www.isbe.net/news/2014/aug27.htm .
Currently, past IAEA president, Dr. Anne Becker leads a group of IAEA members as representatives in this review. Updates on the standards review process is accessible at http://ilartsstandards.wikispaces.com .
Because standards adoption may be a once in a decade event, the Illinois Art Education Association want to be absolutely certain that every visual art educator in Illinois is aware of this initiative and takes part in the opportunity, when given, to share their thoughts and input on how new arts education standards should be shaped.
Please anticipate a period of public comment from the ISBE in the months ahead, along with at least one additional update from the IAEA. However, because we hope to represent the visual arts educators in Illinois, please feel free to contact the IAEA with your concerns, thought, and feedback on this process.
Additionally, I would like to bring another initiative to your attention: Arts Education Advocacy Day. In partnership with other state-wide arts organizations, the IAEA annually hosts an Arts Education Advocacy Day. As part of this endeavor, the IAEA provides the opportunity for arts educators and families of students to travel to Springfield and with other arts advocates. The IAEA will provide bussing, training, and arrange meetings with legislators for all who sign up.
Given the many changes in the Illinois education landscape, I strongly urge you to join the IAEA for Arts Education Advocacy Day on Tuesday April 12th. Sign up at: http://ilaea.org/2016-advocacy-day/ where you can also find other resources to advocate for arts education.
If you have questions about the standards initiative or advocacy day please contact Joan Mills at President@ilaea.org or Chris Sykora at Advocacy@ilaea.org
**Update Nov 2015**
We have passed a major milestone in the Illinois Arts Learning Standards Initiative: On Tuesday, we submitted to ISBE staff the final draft of our recommended arts learning standards (to be found on the resources page). These are high quality, thoughtful standards that reflect your insights and the insights of teachers throughout the state. The initiative would not have reached this milestone without your leadership. Thank you.
We still have much work to do! We are outlining the accompanying report now, and most importantly, we are entering the phase of promoting the standards and building public support for them ahead of our presentation to the ISBE Board (January 2016).