Monday, March 28, 2011

Iowa Arts Education Month 2011

A Resolution to recognize March 2011 as Iowa Arts  Education Month.
2 WHEREAS, arts education, which includes dance,
3 music, theater, and the visual arts, is an essential
4 part of basic education for all students, kindergarten
5 through grade 12, providing for balanced learning
6 and the development of the full potential of young
7 minds; and
8 WHEREAS, arts education contributes powerful
9 educational benefits, utilizing well-planned
10 instruction and activities in the arts through which
11 children develop initiative, creative ability,
12 self-expression, self-reflection, critical thinking
13 skills, discipline, a heightened appreciation of
14 beauty, and cross-cultural understanding; and
15 WHEREAS, experience in the arts develops insights
16 and abilities central to the experience of life, and
17 the arts are collectively one of the most important
18 repositories of culture; and
19 WHEREAS, arts education provides interdisciplinary
20 student learning in such essential skills as
21 collaboration and innovation, assisting students with
22 real-life situations and work readiness; and
23 WHEREAS, national leaders have acknowledged
24 the necessity of including arts experiences in all
25 students’ education for the “whole child”; and
 26 WHEREAS, March is officially recognized as National
27 -1- LSB 2742SC (3) 84 jr/rj 1/ 2
S.R. _____ Youth Art Month;
2 recognizes March 2011 as Iowa Arts Education Month and
3 encourages the support of quality school arts programs
4 for the Iowa children and youth.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Division Administrator of Iowa Dept of Cultural Affairs

Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs Director Mary Tiffany Cownie announced Matthew Harris has been named Division Administrator of the Iowa Arts Council.

“We are delighted to have Matthew joining us as the administrator for the Iowa Arts Council,” Cownie said. “His experience in the performing arts and his background in development will be significant assets to the department in promoting and nurturing the arts and history in Iowa.”

A Cedar Falls, Iowa, native, Harris earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communications/Public Relations from the University of Northern Iowa and worked in advertising sales for the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center before serving as Development Coordinator for the Civic Center of Greater Des Moines for the past six years.

“I am looking forward to working with the Iowa Arts Council staff and cultural organizations across the state,” Harris said. “I have spent my career telling the story of the economic and community impact of arts and culture, and this new opportunity will let me continue to do so, but on a statewide level.”

At the Civic Center, Harris worked to grow its $1.8 million annual fund through donor cultivation, membership promotion and grant writing while managing benefits fulfillment for the center’s title sponsorships, including the Willis Broadway Series, Prairie Meadows Temple Theater Series and the Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield Family Series.

As administrator, Harris said one of his immediate goals will be raising the profile of the Iowa Arts Council.

“With a challenging budgetary climate, we need to make the case for the importance of the Iowa Arts Council as both a resource and chief advocate for arts and culture in Iowa,” he said.

Harris is a graduate of the 2009-2010 Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute and remains active in the community through various board and volunteer commitments. Harris resides in Windsor Heights.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Service through Leadership (One person’s perspective) by David Law

It’s all about the students…that really is why we became teachers in the first place, isn’t it?  The most important kids are the ones in front of you. Just as the most import people are the ones at the meeting.  If you have ever wondered who those officers and leaders of your professional organizations are, they are people just like you who decided to make a difference in the lives of children. They simply took it one step further and got involved in their professional organizations.

Service beyond the regular day … ever felt that you just could not pack anything else into an already overcrowded day?  Too many activities at school and not enough time, too many family activities and not enough time and/or drivers, too much, too much, too much!!!!! Overload, right? RIGHT!!! We have all been there and those people who are serving your organizations are just as busy and just as overloaded.  Why are they doing it then?  Because without dedicated and caring individuals, the organizations will fail and all the members will have less resources and materials to draw upon.

Pay it forward … These individuals care about the long range good of the organization and are giving of their time and energy because they hope to make a difference in the lives and careers of future educators.

Be the change you want to see … If you have a concern or want to see a change then step forward and volunteer.  It can be as simple as being on a committee that is meeting that day (or once in the year.) Without your input the organization you belong to can only go in the direction set by others.  Step up and offer to help by suggesting ideas and offering to be part of the group.

Live your Passion … Your professional organizations live and die with the involvement of their members.  We are all passionate about our subject area and our teaching. Now take it to the next level and live your passion through the professional organizations of which you are a member.

It’s all about the students … In the end that is what it is really all about! Service to others will come back to you in many forms.  Step up now and offer your help and assistance to your professional organizations.  Don’t wait to be asked.  Get Involved!

The above reasons are why I became involved and why I continue to be involved.

David Law
Iowa Bandmasters – Past President
Iowa Music Educators Association – Past President
Iowa Alliance for Arts Education - Chair

Monday, March 14, 2011

Arts Education Funding Cut in Two-Week Budget Fix

POSTED BY TIM MIKULSKI (Americans for the Arts, ArtsBlog) ON MARCH - 3 - 2011

Although Congress quickly avoided a government shutdown this week, arts education funding somehow managed to get caught up in the two-week continuing resolution Band-Aid that was passed by both the House and Senate yesterday.


Iowa Boy Chuck Offenburger: Arts Ed in Iowa

"I really do believe that the high school programs in Iowa – and I'm including music, speech and drama right along with sports – are the best in the nation. A key reason for that is that in Iowa, the emphasis for at least 50 years has been on the educational values of all the activities, and educators are in charge of them. In two-thirds of the communities in Iowa, high school activities are a main source of local entertainment and the rallying point for generations of supporters. As a result, the local and state media pay twice as much attention to the activities as happens in most other states. For years I've told young people that there's no finer place to be a high school anything than right here in Iowa."


Summer Institute Musicians Announced

The Iowa entrants for the Kennedy Center/National Symphony Orchestra Summer Music Institute scholarship have been selected:

  • Kayla Burggraf--flute, a native of Decorah who is studying flute at Rice University in Houston, Texas
  • Bryanne Presley--oboe, a native of Nevada who is studying oboe at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minnesota.