Visual and Performing Arts Information
The California Department of Education (CDE) provides leadership, technical assistance, and support for state and local educational agencies (LEA), professional organizations, and collaborating partners to implement high-quality visual and performing arts education programs, kindergarten through grade twelve.
A renewed concentration on the teaching of the arts in California public schools followed the publication of Arts Work: A Call for Arts Education for All California Students. The report contributed to:
- The State Board of Education adoption of, Pre-K-12 Visual and Performing Arts Content Standards. These content standards list what every student should know and be able to do in the visual and performing arts in pre-kindergarten through grade twelve.
- The Legislature established state funding for the Arts Work Grant Program. This grant program provides funding for LEAs for professional development in the visual and performing arts and comprehensive standards-based arts education programs.
- The Arts Education Program Toolkit, published by CDE. The toolkit is a comprehensive self-study and planning process for establishing quality, standards-based art education programs for all students.
- The establishment of the County Arts Leads Network. This is a network of county arts leaders who meet quarterly to align state art education programs and implement efforts with local initiatives.
The CDE staff provides assistance to school districts and county offices of education in the planning and implementation of comprehensive programs in dance, music, theatre, and visual arts based upon the Visual and Performing Arts Content Standards (pre-kindergarten through grade twelve) and the Visual and Performing Arts Framework (kindergarten through grade twelve).
The CDE staff provides information on arts education developments. They are supported in their efforts to disseminate pertinent information by California Alliance for Arts Education (CAAE) and ArtsEd California .
Legislation and Policies for Arts Education
There are a number of statutory provisions, policies, and guidelines regarding the teaching of the visual and performing arts. Districts need to be aware of these to continue and build strong arts education programs. These statutory provisions cover such topics as inclusion of the four disciplines of dance, drama and theatre, music, and visual arts in the curriculum; use of hazardous materials; areas of study; and adoption of standards.
Arts Education Legislation
- Education Code Section 51210 (Grades one through six)
- Education Code Section 51220 (Grades seventh through twelve)
Arts and Music Block Grant
- Arts and Music Block Grant
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).
- The Arts & Music Block Grant Summary Report, Fiscal Year 2007-08 (DOC; 4pp.)
Legislative summary report of expenditures by districts for funding the visual and performing arts.
Content Standards and Framework
The Visual and Performing Arts Content Standards describe what every pre-kindergarten grade twelve student should know and be able to do in the visual and performing arts. The content standards address the four art disciplines of dance, music, theatre, and visual arts. The standards are approached through five strands: artistic perception; creative expression; historical and cultural context; aesthetic valuing; and connections, relationships and applications developed for each grade level pre-kindergarten through eight, as well as proficient and advanced levels in high school.
The Visual and Performing Arts Framework is a guide to the development of curriculum and instruction for teachers to ensure that all students meet or exceed the content standards in dance, music, theatre, and visual arts. The frameworks provides guidance in implementing and evaluating an arts education program in a school or school district. Additionally, the framework provides information on the role and forms of assessment in arts education, details on teacher preparation and professional development for each arts discipline, and criteria for the evaluation of instructional materials kindergarten through grade eight.
Successful implementation of the arts content standards, curriculum development, and instruction depend on teacher preparation and on long-term professional development. As described in the Visual and Performing Arts Framework, ongoing professional development should be planned for all teachers who teach the arts, classroom teachers, and arts specialists and should take place locally and regularly. Effective professional development is long-term and focused on increasing teachers' knowledge of and practice in the arts and their ability to teach the arts. All professional development programs in the arts emphasize the effective implementation of the state content standards, the guidelines presented in the framework, and training on the use of state-adopted K-8 visual and performing arts instructional materials. The California Arts Project, along with the four California arts professional educator associations, are excellent professional development resources.
- The California
The California Arts Project (TCAP) , one of California's Subject Matter Projects, provides high quality professional development for arts educators at the pre-kindergarten through post-secondary levels. Participation in TCAP fosters the development of knowledgeable arts educators who take responsibility for the development and implementation of standards-based comprehensive and sequential programs in all the arts and at every educational level. Their programs and activities are designed to deepen teachers' knowledge of the dance, music, theater, and visual arts and to enhance teachers' instructional strategies in the teaching of those disciplines.
CDE formed the California Arts Assessment Network to assist school districts in student assessment in the arts, including state, district, and the school level assessments. CAAN is composed of local arts agencies that meet collaboratively on planned assessment projects to strengthen arts education. CDE has available " The Prelude to Performance Assessments in the Arts, K-12 " that provides important assessment information. Through CDE and CAAN, assistance is provided through training models and materials, samples of district arts assessment policies and systems, an item bank that may be accessed in developing district level baseline assessment tools; multiple measure models, selected response and constructed response items, performance assessments, and portfolios.CAAN's Student Work Online (SWOP) is available to upload, analyze, and give feedback on student work. The site provides access to multiple measures II, a resource for teachers working to imbed arts assessment within the instructional process.
The Arts Education Program Toolkit: A Visual and Performing Arts Program Assessment Process has been developed by, CDE and the Model Arts Program . The toolkit provides school districts with a self-study of its arts education program and a planning process for establishing quality, standards-based arts education programs for all students. The self-study creates dialogue, encourages investigation, and speaks to actions. The toolkit defines, examines and offers a brief look at each arts discipline and a building to best practices: look at an arts education program.
Art Education Programs
The extensive arts education programs offered by districts throughout the state reflect community interest in the arts and speak to comprehensive standards-based curriculum and instruction. Through CDE and The California Arts Project (TCAP) districts work to examine, define, and implement their arts education programs. CDE and TCAP provide resources and support for this ongoing work.
Funding and Grants
The California Department of Education provided funding opportunities for visual and performing arts for school districts and county offices of education through its Arts Work Visual and Performing Arts Education Grant Program from 1999 through 2004. The goal of this grant program was to provide professional development and help to implement comprehensive, standards-based instruction programs in the visual and performing arts. Please refer to Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) Partnerships for other funding sources. The Arts and Music Block Grant funding (2006 - 2012) will provide funding to districts, direct-funded charters and county offices of education in support of visual and performing arts instruction. The funding may be used at the discretion of each local educational agency for other educational purposes.