How the Arts Can Enhance After-School Programs
U.S. Department of Education & National Endowment for the Arts
Students from Sigel Elementary School's 21st Century Community Learning Center
engage in linoleum block printing at Taproots School of the Arts in St. Louis, Missouri.
Notice: This document contains examples, contact information and Web sites for information created and
maintained by other public and private organizations. This information is provided for the reader's conven-
ience. The U.S. Department of Education and the National Endowment for the Arts do not control or guar-
antee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness or completeness of this outside information. Further, the inclu-
sion of information, addresses or Web sites for particular items does not reflect their importance, nor is it
intended to endorse any views expressed or products or services offered.
The text ot this report is in the public domain. Feel free to photocopy or reprint.
To request copies of this report, contact the National Endowment for the Arts; 1 100 Pennsylvania Avenue,
NW; Washington, DC 20506-0001; 202-682-5400.
How the Arts Can Enhance After-School Programs
U.S. Department of Education & National Endowment for the Arts
For more information on after-school programs contact us at:
U.S. Department ot Education
Partnership tor Family Involvement in Education
400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
Washington, DC 20202-8173
Telephone: 1-800-USA-LEARN (1-800-872-5327)
FIRS: 1-800-877-8339, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., ET, M-F
National Endowment tor the Arts
Nancy Hanks Center
1 100 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20506-0001
Web site: http://www.arts.gov
Kathleen Pierson, an international Art
Car designer, designed an Art Car tor
the Art Attack'. 21st Century Community
Learning Center program at Blounstown
Middle School in Blountstown, Florida.
The children helped to piece together
the car, which has an anti-smoking
theme. Children also had a chance to
design their own toy Art Cars, as shown
The concept for this report was formulated by Adriana de Kanter and Andy Finch of the
U.S. Department of Education and Lee Kessler of the National Endowment for the Arts.
Additional editing and advice came from Scott Shanklin-Peterson, Robbie McEwen and
Patrice Walker Powell at the National Endowment for the Arts and from Terry Peterson
and Menahem Herman at the U.S. Department of Education. The staff of the 21st
Century Community Learning Centers program, including Robert Stonehill, Shawn
Mussington, Sara Koenig, Jennifer Rinehart, and Steven Balkcom, gave invaluable
assistance in identifying exemplary programs.
HOW THE ARTS CAN ENHANCE AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAMS 3
WHAT WORKS: COMPONENTS OF EXEMPLARY AFTER-SCHOOL ARTS PROGRAMS 5
EXEMPLARY PROGRAMS 8
Ogden Community Learning Center, Ogden, Kansas 9
Connections tor Youth: 21st Century
Community Learning Centers, St. Louis, Missouri 11
Project "Lights and Action," Dallas, Texas 13
Art Attack!, 21st Century Community Learning Center, Calhoun County, Florida . . 15
Court Youth Center, Las Cruces, New Mexico 17
FEDERAL PARTNERS PLAY KEY ROLES IN AFTER-SCHOOL ARTS PROGRAMS 19
U.S. Department of Education 19
National Endowment for the Arts 19
AFTER-SCHOOL ARTS EDUCATION RESOURCES 21
Web Sites 21
Today, more than 28 million school-age children have parents who work outside the
home, and as many as 15 million "latch-key children" return to empty homes after
school. Those statistics and others, such as the fact that serious juvenile crime tends
to peak in the hours between 3 p.m. and 9 p.m., demonstrate the need for effective
after-school programs. To help communities meet that need, the U.S. Department of
Education has instituted the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program,
which supports after-school, summer and weekend activities in neighborhood schools.
This report provides a brief introduction to the role of the arts in those programs. It
consists of a brief summary of recent research findings about both arts and after-
school programs, a description of the key elements of successful programs and some
key examples that showcase partnerships between schools and community-based
organizations. For the purposes of this report, arts activities cover a wide range,
including instrumental and vocal music, dance, theater, creative writing and the visual
arts such as painting, sculpture, digital art and photography.
Research results to which the report refers come from a series of recent studies that
are cited at the end of the report under "Publications," along with information on how
to obtain them.
This report is issued under the auspices of the Partnership for Family Involvement in
Education, an initiative of the U.S. Department of Education that brings together
schools, community organizations, employers, congregations and parents working in
common to improve education for all children.
21st Century Community Learning Centers
The 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, authorized under
Title X, Part I, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, is a key com-
ponent of the administration's commitment to help families and communities
keep their children safe and smart. The 21st Century Community Learning
Centers, supported by grants from the U.S. Department of Education, enable
school districts to fund public schools as community education centers,
keeping children safe in the after-school hours while they learn and build
new skills. Congress has supported this initiative by appropriating nearly $454
million for after-school programs in fiscal year 2000, more than double the fis-
cal year 1999 appropriation of $200 million. In fact, this program has
increased tenfold since 1998. This increase in funding brings the total number
of 21st Century Community Learning Centers grants to 903, spanning every
state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the
Federated States of Micronesia. These grants provide high-quality academ-
ic, arts, and cultural enrichment and expanded youth services, within a com-
munity schools context, for 3,610 schools and provide services to over 615,000
children and 225,000 adults. For fiscal year 2001 , Congress has appropriated
nearly $846 million.
HOW THE ARTS CAN ENHANCE AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAMS
In a recent report, Champions of Change: The Impact of the Arts on Learning, published
jointly by the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities and the Arts
Education Partnership, several independent researchers concluded that engagement in
the arts nurtures the development of cognitive, social and personal competencies. Arts
programs can increase academic achievement, help decrease youth involvement in
delinquent behavior and improve youth attitudes about themselves and the future.
More specifically, researchers found that learning in and through the arts:
^ Contributes significantly to improved critical thinking, problem posing, problem
solving and decision-making;
^ Involves the communication, manipulation, interpretation and understanding of
complex symbols, as do language and mathematics;
^ Fosters higher-order thinking skills of analysis, synthesis and evaluation;
-> Regularly engages multiple skills and abilities; and
-► Develops a person's imagination and judgment.
While many types of after-school programs provide important access, extension and
support to children's learning and social development, those that include the arts add
a special dimension, outlined below. Furthermore, after-school programs add important
elements to in-school arts curricula through extended engagement with the artistic
process beyond the usual 45-minute school periods. Extra time for instruction and
structured exploration give students more satisfactory opportunities for self-expression
or development of their abilities in one or more art forms. This, in turn, enables these
young people to develop the motivation, skills and discipline necessary to make mean-
ingful contributions to solo or group projects. They learn about the importance of high
standards of achievement for themselves and others. They experience what it means to
maintain focus and how sustained practice can lead to higher levels of proficiency.
Research shows that children who participate in after-school programs generally attain
higher academic achievement, behave better in class, handle conflict more effectively
and cooperate more with authority figures and with their peers than their counterparts
who are not in after-school programs. (This research is summarized in the publication
Safe and Smart: Making the After-School Hours Work for Kids released in 1998 by the
U.S. Department of Education and revised in April 2000 as Working for Children and
Families: Safe and Smart After-School Programs.) Arts learning experiences can alter
the attitudes of young people toward themselves and each other. For example, stu-
dents involved in sustained theater arts (scene study, acting techniques, dramatic or
musical theater production) often show gains not only in reading proficiency, but also
in self-control and motivation and in empathy and tolerance for others. Arts activities
can promote shared purpose and the team spirit required, for example, to perform in
an ensemble music group or to design and paint an urban mural.
Learning in and through the arts can even help students overcome the obstacles of dis-
advantaged backgrounds. For example, one of the Champions of Change reports, using
data from a study that followed over 25,000 students for 10 years, found that students
consistently involved in music and theater show significantly higher levels of mathe-
matics proficiency by grade 12 — regardless of their socioeconomic status.
Schools and youth organizations have indicated that the most important factor in the
success of their programs is the relationship between participants and the adults who
work with them. After-school arts programs give young people direct contact with
artists and other professionals who work in arts organizations. Young people in these
programs gain substantial learning and practice opportunities with adults and older
youth who serve as teachers and mentors. These professionals do not replace in-school
arts teachers, but they do support, supplement, and enhance in-school education.
According to Gaining the Arts Advantage: Lessons from School Districts that Value Arts
Education, released in 1999 by the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities
and the Arts Education Partnership, the most critical element in sustaining arts learn-
ing efforts appears to be active community involvement in shaping and implementing
policies and programs. After-school programs offer outstanding opportunities to
engage community resources, such as symphonies or museums, which in turn engage
their own networks, volunteers, suppliers and others. These resources can then be
applied to in-school programs as well, thus supporting and enhancing the work of pro-
fessional teachers. Several of the examples cited below demonstrate how in-school and
after-school programs can work together as part of a comprehensive, district-wide and
community-wide strategy to give all children a top-quality education in the arts.
WHAT WORKS: COMPONENTS OF EXEMPLARY
AFTER-SCHOOL ARTS PROGRAMS
Why do after- school efforts that include the arts work so well? What is it participants
are actually learning? What is critical to the success of these programs?
The Working for Children and Families: Safe and Smart After-School Programs report
identified from the research literature eight key components of a quality after-school
program. These characteristics of high-quality after-school programs, now widely
acknowledged as key to a program's success, help ensure children's continued growth,
development and learning throughout the pre-adolescent and adolescent school years.
The eight components are:
1 . Goal setting, strong management and sustainability
^ Focus on the goals of the program
^ Solid organizational structure
-> Effective management and sustainability
-♦ Meeting legal requirements
2. Quality after-school staffing
^ Role of the program administrator
-> Hiring and retaining qualified staff
^ Professional development for staff
-> Use of volunteers
^ Low staff-to-student ratio
^ Smaller group sizes
3. Attention to safety, health and nutrition issues
^ Creating safe places with adequate space and materials
-> Meeting nutritional needs
4. Effective partnerships with community-based organizations, juvenile justice agen-
cies, law enforcement and youth groups
-* Steps to building an after-school partnership
-> Using community resources effectively
5. Strong involvement of families
-> Involving families and youth in program planning
-> Attending to the needs of working parents
6. Enriching learning opportunities
-> Providing engaging opportunities to grow and learn
-> Challenging curriculum in an enriching environment
-> Coordinating learning with the regular school day
-* Linking school-day and after-school curriculum
7. Linkages between school-day and after-school personnel
■4 Planning time to maximize children's opportunities
-* Coordinated use of facilities and resources
8. Evaluation of program progress and effectiveness
-> Designing effective evaluations
-> Using data for improvement
Characteristics of Effective Arts Programs
In 1996, the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities issued, Coming
Up Taller: Arts and Humanities Programs for Children and Youth at Risk, pro-
duced in cooperation with Americans tor the Arts, that identitied characteris-
tics similar to those listed in Working for Children and Families for after-school
arts programs. For example, it recommended that programs emphasize
hands-on learning and apprenticeship relationships, and that they take full
advantage of the capacity of the arts to develop social skills such as team-
work, self-respect and self-discipline as well as verbal, math and physical skills.
Building on what young people already value, such programs should provide
opportunities for success, shaped by the youth themselves. Like Working for
Children and Families, the report also recognized that positive adult relation
ships are central to success; that quality staff, small class size, and long-term
sustainability are critical elements; and that programs should serve as gate-
ways to other services for children and youth.
The following 21st Century Community Learning Centers programs, supported by
grants from the U.S. Department of Education, are examples of how local communities
across the country are meeting the need for safe and smart after- school activities that
serve young people of all ages. These examples are by no means exhaustive; they are
intended to illustrate the kinds of after-school programs that are working in schools
Community Learning Centers provide these expanded learning opportunities for partici-
pating children in safe, drug-free and supervised environments. Enabling schools to
stay open longer, they are places where children have access to:
-> Homework centers;
-* Intensive mentoring in basic skills;
-> Drug and violence prevention counseling;
-> Help for preparing to take college prep courses in high school;
-> Academic, artistic and cultural enrichment activities;
-> Technology education programs; and
-> Services relating to disabilities.
A key feature of each after-school program on the following pages is the partnerships
they have with other organizations. Several of the examples are in schools that use
after-school and in-school programs together to provide quality learning opportunities
and to improve student achievement.
Ogden Community Learning Center
Contact: Barbara Tierney
Ogden Elementary School
Kids don't just experience art in a classroom; they can experience art in the
world around them. - Barbara Tierney
Ogden, Kansas, is a rural community of 1,494 people located near the geographic cen-
ter of the United States. There is no health service, no public transportation, no public
library, community center, senior center or movie theater. But Ogden Elementary
School has a strong commitment to arts education. Winner of a Comprehensive School
Reform Demonstration grant from the U.S. Department of Education, the school follows
a model the essential goal of which is to make all children literate in language, numer-
acy and the arts. That includes hands-on experiences so that students can become
familiar with real works of art and create their own works using an artistic medium.
For several years, the school has used state "at-risk" monies to develop an educational
partnership with the Beach Museum of Art at Kansas State University. Every time a
new exhibition opens, each class visits the museum for a tour and hands-on activity.
Funding from the Kansas Arts Commission has supported artists in residence as well
as trips to the museum and other arts organizations. According to Ogden 's principal,
it's hard to measure children's sense of respect, responsibility and self-discipline, but
the results of an arts-centered program are easy to discern. Even the bus drivers com-
pliment her on the children's behavior now!
When it received a 21st Century Community Learning Center grant, Ogden Elementary
tried something new: it used a portion of its funds to help support the Young Curators
Project for sixth-graders at the local middle school. The rationale: many of the middle-
schoolers are graduates of Ogden who will return next year to their elementary school
as seventh-grade mentors. In this way, the students' carefully nurtured relationship
with the Beach Museum will be strengthened and they will bring their new skills and
knowledge back to Ogden in a new role.
The sixth-graders, mentored by the entire museum staff, created a public exhibition
from the Beach Museum's collection. Tasks included research and label writing, pro-
ducing a catalogue, fundraising, public relations and programming, such as an opening
for parents and friends and other member of the public as part of the Museum's "Arts
Above the Arch" series. As a result, the students received excellent press coverage of
the event through local television, radio and newspaper. All of this coverage empha-
sized the partnership and the students' gains in achievement and self-esteem.
The museum received support for Young Curators from the Kansas Arts Commission,
Intrust Bank, and the Manhattan Broadcasting Company, Inc. Next year, the muse-
um, a member of the Partnership for Family Involvement in Education, will partner
with another Community Learning Center to focus on curriculum development, teach-
ers' workshops, artists' residencies, and after-school and summer programming.
Connections for Youth: 21st Century Community Learning Centers
St. Louis, Missouri
Contact: Rose M. Thompson
21st Century Community Learning Centers
St. Louis Public Schools
This grant has really opened up opportunities and let us make connections
with arts resources... resources that were out there, just waiting to be used.
- Rose M. Thompson
"Connections For Youth: A 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program" pro-
vides after-school and Saturday programs for 650 students in grades four through
eight in the St. Louis Public Schools. Activities in the program's seven community
learning centers include after-school academic acceleration, enrichment and recreation;
a Saturday academy focusing on science, math and technology; parent education and
support programs; and professional development for program staff. The program has
also availed itself of community arts resources.
The Center of Contemporary Arts (COCA), a non-profit community-based arts center,
provides extensive subsidized outreach initiatives to select St. Louis Community
Learning Centers. It provides in-school residencies, after-school workshops lasting
eight to ten weeks (in mural painting, poster design, pottery and mixed media) and
summer programs that include the arts and technology. Twice a week, students come
to COCA or staff are sent to the Community Learning Center. Instruction, supplies
and administrative costs are supported by the Community Learning Center grant.
Activities have included five in-school broadcasts at Clay Elementary School that high-
lighted significant changes, individuals and events that affect the students' school com-
munity. Curriculum connections are made to social studies, math, art and language
arts. Students have participated in a year-long residency and have been exposed to the
technical aspects of videotaping, script-writing, investigative reporting and interviews,
and on-camera and off-camera production.
Another COCA project, ARTS-tainment, provides a series of hands-on art projects, such
as collages, montages, wall hangings, and dolls and villages, designed to promote lan-
guage and thinking skills, social interaction and collective activity, concentration, self-
expression, hand-eye coordination, balance and play. Introduction to dance, at Carver
Elementary School, gives children the opportunity to explore different dance styles,
techniques, vocabulary and history, and to discover the benefits of physical fitness, dis-
cipline, self-confidence, self-expression and teamwork. According to COCA staff, chil-
dren in the program who have not had previous concentrated exposure in the arts
learn a whole new way to look at the world around them. Students not only learn
about the arts, but also learn more about themselves and their environment.
Another service provider for the Community Learning Centers is the Taproots School
of the Arts, which centers on the book-making arts. Marking the first collaboration
between the city's Board of Education and Taproots, the Community Learning Center
grant pays for Taproots staff to come into the schools as well as to bring students to
Taproots. Printmaking, letterpress, papermaking, paper marbling and photography
classes help students to weave image and word together through all their activities.
No classes exceed 10 students in size.
Similarly, the Portfolio Gallery and Educational Center involves the Community
Learning Centers' participants in eight- to-ten-week workshops in mural painting,
poster design, pottery, and mixed media. The Community Learning Center grant pays
for instruction and supplies as well as administrative costs. As at Taproots, in some
cases the children come to the facility, while in others staff are sent to the Community
Learning Centers. The schools are also working with many other cultural organiza-
tions, such as the St. Louis Science Center and the Missouri Botanical Garden.
The St. Louis Public Schools is a proud member of the Partnership for Family
Involvement in Education, as is the Columbia School, one of the seven Community
Learning Centers in the "Connections for Youth" program.
Project "Lights and Action"
Dallas Independent School District
Contact: Gigi Antoni
Some schools look like prisons, but when there is art in schools it changes
the way kids talk to each other, the way they behave. - Ron Morris,
Teacher, Tolbert Elementary School, Dallas
Using a 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant, Project "Lights and Action"
has established six secondary and 1 1 elementary community learning centers across
the Dallas Independent School District, the tenth largest district in the nation. "Lights
and Action" sites will offer services to over 1 1,000 students and 4,700 adults.
Working with Project "Lights and Action," ArtsPartners is a collaboration of the City of
Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, the public schools and 50 of the city's arts and cultur-
al organizations. The goal is to maximize learning in Dallas schools through the inte-
gration of arts and cultural programs into the curricula. ArtsPartners, which is a
grantee of the National Endowment for the Arts, coordinates 650 cultural outreach pro-
grams, educates teachers about the availability and value of these programs, provides
technical assistance to help educators implement the programs and provides access to
the funding needed to pay for them.
This comprehensive coordinated effort seeks to maximize the impact of Dallas' best arts
and cultural programs on learning both in the classroom and after school. Not only
are students receiving services during the school day but also, as a result of a 21st
Century Community Learning Centers grant, children are benefiting from after-school
arts education programming that supports academic and enrichment goals.
ArtsPartners works with each 21st Community Learning Center campus to design a
customized program that meets its specific needs.
Young Audiences of Greater Dallas was contracted by the City of Dallas to serve as the
managing partner of ArtsPartners. It is charged with developing the partnership's pro-
cedures and policies, and with recruiting and coordinating the participating organiza-
tions as well as the volunteer community leadership and staff to implement and
expand the program. Young Audiences also coordinates the development and distribu-
tion of educational materials pertaining to the program, manages all financial proce-
dures for the program (including the recruitment of private funding), develops techno-
logical tools and develops and implements a comprehensive assessment program. By
the end of its three-year pilot phase, ArtsPartners expects to provide arts-in-education
services to every elementary school child in the Dallas public schools.
ArtsPartners has provided approximately 2,000 parents and children with arts and cul-
tural programming and 50 teachers with professional development opportunities at 10
schools. Twenty Dallas arts and cultural institutions have provided programs, includ-
ing field trips with parents and teachers, residencies, summer camps, and perfor-
mances. Providers range from the Dallas Zoo to the Junior Players Guild, from Anita
N. Martinez Ballet Folklorico to the Age of Steam Museum. Seventy-five Dallas artists
received training in child development, program design, curriculum integration, class-
room management and teacher communication skills. An Arts-in-Education Superday,
attended by 350 educators, principals, artists, parents, arts and cultural agency repre-
sentatives and civic leaders, featured speakers from Texas and across the United States
who gave lectures/workshops in grant writing, multiple intelligences, literacy, curricu-
lum integration and arts-in-education research. More than two dozen Dallas artists
and arts organizations provided cultural services to students and teachers. Teachers,
principals and parent volunteers associated with the ArtsPartners' 21st Century
Community Learning Center have been enthusiastic. They particularly enjoy the many
flexible alternatives for after-school enrichment that ArtsPartners offers.
The Dallas public school system is a member of the Partnership for Family Involvement
in Education. In June 2000, this collaboration was featured in the U.S. Department of
Education's Satellite Town Meeting. For a videotape of this program, which was titled
"Learning Everywhere - In and Out of School," please call 1-877-4ED-PUBS.
Art Attack!, 21st Century Community Learning Center
W.T. Neal Civic Center/Blountstown Middle School
Calhoun County, Florida
W.T. Neal Civic Center
These are kids who don't get out to museums, so we bring the world to
them. - Suella McMillan
Art Attack!, a program designed by the non-profit Neal Civic Center, provides free, posi-
tive, constructive and educational opportunities for at-risk children and their families
during non-school hours. The program consists of the following components: eight-
week summer day camps; Saturday programs for 21 weeks to parallel the school calen-
dar; weekly tutoring and mentoring for Saturday program participants; and weekly in-
school tutoring, mentoring and counseling.
The curriculum includes literature, visual arts (drawing, painting, sculpting), music,
dance, drumming, architectural interpretation (as part of regional history), aesthetics
and art criticism, art appreciation, public performances, nutrition education and a fam-
ily literacy program. National and international artists demonstrate for and work with
the children. For example, artists in residence have included a mosaicist and a play-
wright, among others. The playwright wrote a play based on local stories, which was
produced with local actors and actresses. The mosaicist's six-month residency was
secured through the National Endowment for the Arts' Artists & Communities
Millennium Project, which engaged a Millennium Artist for each of the 50 states and
six special jurisdictions to focus on the power of the arts in addressing fundamental
issues of community life.
In 2000, students undertook the Mars Millennium Project, a national initiative that
challenges students to design a human community for the red planet by combining
arts, sciences and technology. Additional future activities include an internship pro-
gram for college students majoring in child development and art education, therapy or
administration; a traveling exhibition of the children's work; and public art performances
offered free in each community. Plans include video documentation of this project so it
can be used as a prototype for rural art intervention programs nationwide.
This Community Learning Center program places great emphasis on family involve-
ment. For example, it draws families into leadership roles in countywide events via
their supervision of community-produced exhibits. Families' expertise and resources
are used to compile a written community history. Also, families are offered a wide
menu of volunteer and leadership opportunities, such as hosting performances, creat-
ing and caring for exhibits, and identifying local needs and the roles they might play in
meeting them. Throughout, parents can make choices according to their schedules,
preferences and talents.
The Neal Civic Center established Art Attack! at three local libraries independently of
the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program. It then secured a grant on
behalf of the Calhoun County School Board from the 21st Century Community
Learning Centers program for a fourth site: the Blountstown Middle School. It received
funding for additional programming from the Department of Juvenile Justice, The
Florida Arts Council, the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs and the Neal Center's arts
and education budget. Altogether, the program currently serves 170 students and their
families. The Neal Center provides program management and supervision, service
delivery, fiscal management, reporting, and grant management.
Court Youth Center
Margaret S. Ryan Safe After School Program
Las Cruces, New Mexico
Contact: Irene Oliver Lewis
Executive Director and Artistic Director
Court Youth Center
The 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant has enabled Court
Youth Center to provide children, youth and families in our community with
greater access to an educational arts facility and authentic arts experiences
in our arts-based Safe After School program- Irene Oliver Lewis
The Court Youth Center (CYC), located in an old junior high school, is home to youth
and community programs in the visual and performing arts and other areas. CYC is a
partnership between the schools, who own the building, and the City of Las Cruces.
Together with the Las Cruces Public School District, it has established a network of
seven 21st Century Community Learning Centers, expanding the Safe After School
program started in 1997. The learning centers are based at the individual schools and
use CYC as an off-campus laboratory and studio for programs and field trips.
After-school, weekend and summer programs are designed around an arts-based and
career-focused curriculum which incorporates hands-on meaningful applications of fine
arts. Activities are linked to the school curriculum and are designed to assist the stu-
dents in meeting or exceeding academic standards in reading, math, science, creative
thinking and life skills. These avenues encourage students to become productive citi-
zens in the community; learn healthy leisure alternatives that contribute to reduced
drug use and violence; and strive for educational success.
The ratio of staff is ten to one. The staff consists of a certified school employee of the
host school as the lead teacher and supervisor; six to eight parent teachers living in the
neighborhoods; a CYC artistic director, after-school coordinator and six artists to inte-
grate the arts into the core academic subjects; and leaders from community organiza-
tions which offer training, volunteers, mentors and additional resources. Safe After
School staff, CYC staff and artists are trained together to understand the concept and
techniques of integrating the arts into the regular academic curriculum. Training is
conducted three times a year.
There are programs at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. At the middle
school, six certified teachers and one educational assistant make up the staff.
Sessions include photography, a Mars Millennium Project and mural, as well as tennis
and computers. Working in a team with the teacher, a CYC artist is providing artistic
guidance for the mural project. Another CYC artist has formed a theatre group. The
CYC itself hosts a wide variety of other arts activities.
Estompa de Mejico, a youth ballet Folklorico group at the Court Youth Center, perform
at the closing ceremony for the Las Cruces, New Mexico 21st Century Community
Learning Center Safe After School Program which included more than 500 participants
from kindergarten to 12th grade.
FEDERAL PARTNERS PLAY KEY ROLE IN
AFTER-SCHOOL ARTS PROGRAMS
The U.S. Department ot Education
The primary mission of the U.S. Department of Education is to ensure equal access to
education and to promote educational excellence for all Americans. The Department
encourages schools to consider including the arts as a core academic subject and as an
important component of school improvement strategies. After-school activities are per-
missible among a variety of ED programs such as Title I of the Elementary and
Secondary Education Act and the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities pro-
gram. Arts education activities are also permissible under many programs.
An important initiative of the Department is the Partnership for Family Involvement in
Education (PFIE). PFIE is based on 30 years of research that finds that children learn
better and are more successful in school when their families and communities are
involved in their education. Composed of more than 6,100 partners — schools, busi-
nesses, community groups and faith-based organizations — PFIE addresses issues, pro-
vides information, expands professional development and offers opportunities for shar-
ing and networking. Based at the Department, the PFIE staff organize regional and
national forums and conferences on current, family-friendly policies and exemplary
practices; provide the partners with comprehensive management and assessment tools;
and use resources and research from a variety of sources to mobilize interest, energy
and expertise through publications, a Web site, and extended technical assistance.
Since 1997, the Department has supported the 21st Century Community Learning
Centers program as a key component of the administration's efforts to keep children
safe outside of regular school hours; to provide academic and other enrichment oppor-
tunities for children; and to provide life-long learning opportunities for communities.
National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) is committed to advancing arts learning in
this country. It works with agencies and organizations that are involved with pre-
kindergarten through grade 12 and youth arts at the national and state levels. For
decades, the NEA has implemented partnerships with state arts agencies in the area of
Within the school setting, the Endowment recommends a sequential education in the
arts for all children that is linked to content standards, taught by qualified teachers,
regularly engages artists, and brings students into contact with works of art. In addi-
tion, the NEA supports the arts beyond the classroom through visual arts workshops in
community centers, creative writing programs in YMCAs, student-created exhibitions
on local history, summer dance camps, "behind the scenes" opera programs, folk arts
classes, a young professional conductors program, museum volunteer training pro-
grams for senior citizens and young students, and collaborative cross-generational
events including workshops, performances, exhibits and oral history projects.
Staff, students, and family members at the St. Louis Public Schools' Carver Elementary
21st Century Community Learning Center celebrate the culmination of a ten-week pro-
gram with Portfolio Art Gallery and Education Center. Students provided detailed infor-
mation about how they developed their pottery, sculptures, and other products.
AFTER-SCHOOL ARTS EDUCATION RESOURCES
Americans for the Arts
Americans for the Arts has produced the YouthARTS Tool Kit. Based on rigorous
research, the kit features a step-by-step handbook, a video and "lessons learned" video
supplement, and a diskette with sample paperwork such as contracts, evaluation forms
and other materials already in use by youth arts programs. For more information, call
Arts Education Partnership
The Arts Education Partnership is a coalition of over 100 national education, arts,
business, philanthropic and government organizations that promote arts education and
demonstrate its role in enabling all students to succeed in school, life and work.
The Coming Up Taller Awards Program
Sponsored by the NEA and the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities
(PCAH), the Coming Up Taller program recognizes some of the outstanding after-school,
weekend and summer programs for children from at-risk communities that are cur-
rently fostering the creative and intellectual development of America's youth. These
awards focus national attention on concrete examples of the arts and humanities bene-
fiting this country. Accompanied by a cash award, the awards not only reward these
projects with recognition but also contribute financial support for their continued
work. For more information on the awards program, go to PCAH's web site at
http/ / www.pcah.gov.
Institute of Museum and Library Services
This federal agency supports museums' and libraries' ability to serve the public
through grants to institutions, agencies, and professional associations.
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
The Kennedy Center provides resources for students, educators, artists, and the public
to experience and explore the arts. It has issued "The Arts Beyond the School Day:
Extending the Power." Identifying essential elements of arts-based after-school pro-
grams and a list of quality indicators that help describe each essential element, the
report calls for submission of best practice models. For information contact
firstname.lastname@example.org. ARTSEDGE, a national arts and education information
network, supports the place of arts education at the center of the curriculum through
creative and appropriate uses of technology and helps educators to teach in, through
and about the arts: http://artsedge.kennedy-center.org
The Mars Millennium Project
Through the arts, science and technology, this project challenges students to design a
future community for the planet Mars. It is a White House Millennium Council Youth
Initiative, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, the U.S. Department of
Education, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and its Jet Propulsion
Laboratory, and the J. Paul Getty Trust.
National Assembly of State Arts Agencies
Their mission is to advance a meaningful role for the arts in the lives of individuals,
families and communities in all 50 states and six jurisdictions.
National Endowment for the Arts
As described above, the NEA supports arts education in a variety of ways. For infor-
mation on its grants programs, go to www.arts.gov.
Partnership for Family Involvement in Education
This site has information on the partnership and how to join; a list of members; part-
ner activities; and a comprehensive listing of U.S. Department of Education publica-
tions on family and community involvement, including after-school programs; and
President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities
The President's Committee was created by Presidential Executive Order to encourage
private sector support and to increase public appreciation for the arts and the humani-
ties through projects, publications and meetings.
21st Century Community Learning Centers Program
This Web site provides detailed information including applications, answers to fre-
quently asked questions, a searchable database of grantees and much more.
U.S. Department of Education
Find the latest news about national education issues; review education-related publica-
tions and statistics; and learn about the offices and programs at the U.S. Department
U.S. Department of Justice
Justice for Kids and Youth Home Page
www.usdoj .gov/ kidspage
The U.S. Department of Justice supports after-school programs that include the arts.
At this Web site, children and youth can learn about crime prevention, staying safe,
volunteer and community service opportunities, and the criminal justice system.
As you think about organizing and implementing an after-school program, you can find
helpful information and other free publications through the U.S. Department of
Education's Web site. To order publications, call ED Pubs, a Department service that
provides publications free to the public in printed form and in alternate formats, such
as Braille and large print, upon request. Call toll-free at 877-4ED-PUBS, or order
online by visiting the Web site at www.ed.gov/pubs/edpubs.html.
Some of the publications available through ED Pubs that you may find helpful are:
Working for Children and Families: Safe and Smart After-School Programs
Keeping Schools Open as Community Learning Centers
Give Us Wings, Let Us Fly
Bringing Education Into the Afterschool Hours
After-School Action Kit: Get Into Action
After-School Programs: Keeping Children Safe and Smart
A Call to Commitment: Fathers' Involvement in Children's Learning
The Partnership for Family Involvement in Education: Who We Are and
What We Do
Other helpful publications available through other sources are:
• Champions of Change: The Impact of the Arts on Learning, available at
• Gaining the Arts Advantage, available by calling (202) 336-7016.
• Coming Up Taller: Arts and Humanities Programs for Children and Youth at Risk,
available by calling (202) 682-5409 or faxing to (202) 682-5668.
• Creative Partnerships for Prevention: Using the Arts and Humanities to Build
Resiliency in Youth, available through the U.S. Government Printing Office at
A Thomas Tolbert Elementary stu-
dent proudly shows ott the
Navajo weaving that she created
in the Young Audiences of
Greater Dallas residency work-
shop taught by fiber artist Linda
Disosway. This residency is taught
in an after-school program that is
part of the Lights and Action
Dallas Independent School District
21st Century Community Learning
FOR THE ARTS