April 24, 2020

#ARTSareEssential: A Campaign to Make Visible the Importance of the Arts for 1.1 million Students in the NYC Public School System

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The NYC Arts in Education Roundtable supports the #ARTSareEssential campaign. Learn more and get involved in the movement to make visible the importance of the Arts for 1.1 million students in the NYC Public School System.

NYC public school parents and educators have been at home navigating the transition to remote learning, while also dealing with the stressors of remote work or loss of work, caring or mourning for sick loved ones, and helping young people process it all. The decision to deem as ‘non-essential’ the work of over 300 arts and cultural organizations with active contracts with the DOE means that the gap that they fill to support social-emotional learning and develop critical thinking skills is lost. The arts are important to express hope, heal, and grieve the collective societal trauma that we are all experiencing. Let’s allow young people to process their reality, imagine ways to express themselves, and experience moments of joy.

Will you join the campaign to let decision makers know how important these organizations are to students, school administrations, teachers and parents navigating the stressful world of homeschooling, continuing to work and caring for sick loved ones?

The #ARTSareEssential to young people now more than ever.

Our Goal: Inspire young people, educators, artists, parents and organizations to make visible the power of the arts during these difficult times. Occurring primarily online, we will use the hashtag, #ARTSareEssential to make visible the importance of the arts for 1.1 million students in the NYC public school system.

Our Campaign: Set to run approximately 4 weeks and as long as the trending wave will move. April 29th to May 20th. During that time, we hope to build connections and strengthen the voice of our community.

Our Message: The primary message is to share multiple perspectives on the importance of the arts from young people, parents, artists, educators and cultural organizations. Share your stories, share your art, share your educational goals and challenges, and most importantly, share why the arts are important now more than ever.

Getting Started:

  1. For tools and more information register here: https://forms.gle/4w1hMfuUfhYqKuth9
  2. Follow the NYC Arts in Education Roundtable: https://twitter.com/nycaier
  3. Join a Wednesday storytelling circle, “Teaching Artists Telling Stories”

What Can I Do?

Send the message that #ARTSareEssential via social media. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

– Share a photo holding the #ARTSareEssential sign

– Use the social media text samples (or make your own!)

– Post a video message of why you think #ARTSareEssential

We are here to help. By completing the campaign form you agree to receive social media templates and four weekly reminders to keep posting. From April 29 – May 20, we hope to build connections and strengthen the voice of our community.Access the Form >>>

The Roundtable is for calling for immediate action in the continuation of contracted arts programming for the children of New York City. Please continue to share the message by contacting your City Council Representatives as an individual or on behalf of your organization.Read Our Call to Action >>>

Additional Research and Readings

We’ve gathered a few resources from the field to support the #ARTSareEssential campaign. Please share on social media and use in your advocacy work.