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September 4, 2012 > Creative impact for public education

Creative impact for public education

Submitted By Unique Holland, Alameda County Office of Education

Public education in California is facing a crucial time - resources are low and high-stakes testing has nearly eliminated classroom time for the arts and creativity. In response to this reality, Bay Area arts and education organizations have created an innovative coalition to champion the essential role that the arts play in transforming young people and communities. On September 13, this coalition, Creative Impact, will kick off a year-long celebration of art in education throughout the Bay Area.

"The creativity of California's students and educators is an all-too-often untapped resource. We are working with artists and the arts community to engage each and every student, and to restore the joy of teaching in our schools," says Craig Cheslog, principal advisor to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction at the California Department of Education and co-director of California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson's Blueprint for Creative Schools.

Malissa Ferruzzi Shriver, the other half of the Blueprint task force leadership team and chair of the California Arts Council adds, "This is an equity issue. In affluent communities, parents are paying to assure a complete, engaging, and inspiring education. It is our job to assure that what is best for children in our most affluent communities is best for each and every child."

Creative Impact has planned a series of activities, including family-accessible events, to celebrate the third annual National Arts in Education Week, September 9-15, with the ultimate goal of building broader support for education through the arts.

Scheduled events include:
Sept. 12 (4:30 p.m.): Stand Up for Our Children, an education forum sponsored by the Alameda County Office of Education to educate the community about the upcoming statewide ballot initiatives. Hosted at the Oakland School for the Arts. (Open to the public)

Sept. 13 (4-8 p.m.): An Arts Education Resource Fair and Celebration hosted at San Francisco's Asian Art Museum. (Open to the public; includes a reception 6-8 p.m.)

Sept. 15: Family Day events take place at multiple art and community venues throughout the Bay Area. (Open to the public)

During National Arts in Education Week, Creative Impact will also launch a year-round online calendar ( that will be the go-to place to find arts education activities across the Bay Area.

For more information visit the following websites:,,

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