New York City Announces New Arts Programs for Thousands of Students

Roundtable Co-Chairs Kati Koerner and Ted Wiprud joined Mayor de Blasio, Comptroller Stringer and Chancellor Farina as they announced how the City will spend $23 million in additional funds for arts in education in 2014-15.

By Jenny Clarke

Mayor Bill de Blasio, Comptroller Scott M. Stringer and Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina have announced details of an unprecedented $23 million in additional arts funding for New York City schools.

Significant investments announced on Tuesday, July 1, will have a deep impact on the quality and availability of arts education for all students throughout the City in the 2014-15 school year and beyond. These new initiatives put arts teachers in high-needs schools, increase partnerships with arts institutions, and expand professional development for arts and classroom teachers. Perhaps most significant is the effort to address imbalances in arts education between low and high income communities, highlighted by  Comptroller Stringer’s in his “State of the Arts” report released earlier this year. Comptroller Stringer presented the report to the Roundtable community at our Face to Face conference in April and called upon all of us to fight for arts education for all students. Watch Video from Face to Face.

Roundtable Co-Chairs Kati Koerner and Ted Wiprud, present on the podium for Tuesday’s historic announcement, have been actively involved in conversations to expand arts education funding for New York City students. “The arts education practitioners and cultural institutions that make up the Roundtable applaud the Mayor, the City Council, and the Chancellor’s decisive leadership in directing such a significant amount of funding in the FY15 City budget toward a variety of innovative arts education initiatives,” said Koerner and Wiprud. “Our members are excited about the range of meaningful opportunities the Mayor’s plan will afford for us to partner with schools. Together, we can ensure that the peerless cultural resources of this City are used to deepen arts learning for all students from pre-K through high school.”

Tuesday’s announcement comes from a deep commitment to arts education from many key areas of the current administration. City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito thanked Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Farina for their commitment to funding arts programs for our City’s students.

Chancellor Farina, who delivered the keynote address at Face to Face in April, added “Expanding access to arts education will help inspire students, build confidence, and deepen their critical thinking skills. By integrating a rigorous arts curriculum and art making into schools, we can provide hands-on learning experiences that help students thrive.”

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