The First 100 Stories Campaign: National Arts in Education Week September 11-17

In July 2010, Congress designated the second week of September as National Arts In Education Week to promote and showcase the immense role arts education has in producing engaged, successful, and college and career-ready students to meet the challenges of the new CORE Standards. To that end, First Online with Fran is launching The First 100 Stories Campaign.

The Arts continue to be cut from school curriculums across the nation. Despite arts advocacy groups’ efforts to prevent the decline of arts inclusion, the budgetary solution remains to be that the arts are perceived as extra-curricular and disposable. In Chris Cleave’s novel Little Bee, the central character decided to right a wrong by collecting stories: “One story makes you weak. But as soon as we have one-hundred stories, you will be strong.” Similarly, we can do the same for the Arts. Here’s how:

Let’s hear it from you: Teachers! Students! Graduates! Parents! Artists!

How has your life been indelibly touched by a teacher who utilized the arts for whatever reason? How were they instrumental in breaking the mold to allow you to become who you are today? Click here.

How are the arts re-igniting your community and sparking innovation and creativity in your local schools?
Click here.

Here are the first 2! Only 98 to go …

Testimonial #1. Edie Falco, Tony-Award winning Actor
“Fran McGarry and Eve Terry, perhaps unbeknownst to them, played a huge part in my path to my present career. Though I was just a school kid, they treated me like an artist; made me believe I had something unique to offer. They helped grow my confidence which I believe can take you anywhere you want to go. I am so grateful.”

Testimonial #2: Keith Johnston, co-founded the Creative Arts Team’s College/Adult Program
My Uncle Calvin from Jamaica taught me how to play guitar and draw. He admonished me for my fear of speaking. “Being shy is selfish. God gave you a gift. If you don’t use it you’ll become a cosmic clogger. If you hold it to yourself you’re not allowing to speak your artistic gifts. Your artistic gifts is the voice of God.”
That’s what Uncle Calvin said and I never forgot it. It has become my mantra.

The collection of testimonials will be forwarded to Arts Education Partnership who will serve as a national hub for information on how the arts are going strong in our nation’s communities and schools and strategies for getting involved in arts education and supporting the arts in your community.

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