Yes - let's build the Arts

While the Globe's editorial focused, primarily, on the arts as an economic driver (Let's build Massachusetts by building the arts), the arts are a component of a basic education. However, since the dawn of the "standards-based era", their focus of study has eroded in many schools; it doesn't help that the Massachusetts Arts Curriculum Framework hasn't been updated since first implemented in 1999.

An arts education can help students develop a variety of skills, such as critical thinking and problem-solving, as well as to help foster creative thinking. Further, the arts provide a way for students to communicate and collaborate across language, cultural, and other boundaries, and can increase their global knowledge. We should support efforts that:
  • support, expand, and improve children's access to quality arts and cultural programs;
  • support, expand, and improve arts literacy for all students;
  • support, expand, and improve opportunities to use arts education to expand and enhance access to the core curriculum;
  • support, expand, and improve activities that prepare teachers to integrate the arts into the curriculum of other academic subjects to supplement and engage student learning; and 
  • support, expand, and improve science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) initiatives.*
The arts play a vital role in the education of students. Massachusetts' educators are committed to developing and maintaining comprehensive arts curricula and programming that follow the highest local, state, and national standards. Let's help them, our students, and our Commonwealth by integrating and updating a comprehensive 21st century Arts Framework.

*Massachusetts PTA's legislative position statements.
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