October 12, 2011

Arts Education Budget Slashed: 4 Ways Parents Can Advocate

In May, the “Setting New Priorities in Education Spending Act” (HR 1891) was introduced for the purpose of eliminating 43 existing federal education programs, including Arts in Education, within the U.S. Department of Education (USDE).

The latest draft budget bill released in earlier this month by the House Appropriations Committee would eliminate the Arts in Education program by slashing its budget of $27 million. Hundreds of thousands of students across the country, gain access to high quality arts programming through this important program.

As American citizens, we have an obligation to share with our elected officials what is important to us. If they never hear from you how will they know? It is especially important for parents who value arts education to let their representatives to Congress know why.

Here are four ways parents can advocate for more arts education:

Contact Congress
Oklahomans for the Arts has posted a copy of a message we sent to our elected representative on our website. Feel free to copy and paste this message into an email from you. Be sure to include a genuine, personal note expressing why arts education in your child's school is important to you! Here is a list of email addresses of Oklahoma Congressmen. Visit Vote Smart to determine your Congressman. Be sure to tell the Congressman you live in his district, and even in the include the name of your child's school if you like.

Share This Newsletter With Your Friends and Family
Tell your friends and family about Oklahomans for the Arts. Send them this link where they can sign up for our newsletter and action updates.

Get Involved with OFTA
We are looking for Arts Advocacy Captains and people to serve on our Arts Education Committee. Contact us if you're interested!
Read This Landmark Report
In May, the President's Committee Arts and the Humanities released a stellar report, Reinvesting in Arts Education: Winning America’s Future Through Creative Schools, which details the powerful role that arts education strategies can play in closing the achievement gap, improving student engagement, and building creativity and nurturing innovative thinking skills. This report was featured in the LA Times, Washington Post and Wall Street Journal. Start asking decision makers why arts education funding is on the decline if the arts build stronger schools and students. It's a fair question.