Baltimore City Public Schools Plans To Enshrine Protections For Arts Education

Baltimore City Public Schools teachers attend Art Every Day’s Summer Arts Integration Conference. Screenshot via @arts_every_day on Instagram.

What’s happening?

Baltimore City Public Schools plans to approve new measures to boost arts education in city schools, including the adoption of an ‘equity addendum” by the end of 2023 that would increase the number of arts teachers to students, Zshekinah Collier reports for WYPR.

Why is the district focusing on improving arts education?

The number of certified fine arts teachers in Baltimore City Public Schools has dwindled over the last few years. From 2018 to 2020, the district went from 218 arts teachers to 174—which amounts to roughly  one teacher per school and leaving many without any art classes for students. 

To combat these challenges, the district partnered with Arts Every Day, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding arts education in Baltimore City. Together, the district and nonprofit developed a five-year strategic plan, which includes hiring more arts teachers and ensuring students have equitable access to arts programs. 

Under Arts Every Day’s vision, every student in Baltimore City schools should have “adequate funding for supplies and equipment, opportunities for students to showcase their work and high-quality professional development for the certified fine arts teachers that are teaching,” said executive director, Julia DiBussolo. 

Anything else I should know? 

Baltimore City Public Schools spent about $2.9 million on arts education across 150 schools with funding from the American Rescue Plan Act and the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Concentration of Poverty Fund. The district plans to dedicate a similar amount of money to arts again this year. 

You can read more here.

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