President and CEO, San Diego Youth SymphonyPlease contact Congress and forward this Urgent Advocacy Action Alert to other arts education supporters today!

Two San Diego Congress Members (Duncan Hunter and Susan Davis) are among the  handful of key decision makers in federal education policy considering drastic changes to arts education.

This Wednesday morning at 10am EST, the U.S. House Education and Workforce Committee will vote on a bill (HR 1891) that would eliminate the Arts in Education program at the U.S. Department of Education, along with 42 other federal education programs.  The lead sponsor of the bill, Education Subcommittee Chairman Duncan Hunter (R-CA), calls the Arts in Education program “unnecessary” in his bill language. This bill is even more serious a threat than the annual federal funding measures, as HR 1891 would permanently strip the Arts in Education language out of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) that allows the program to be funded each year.

The Arts in Education (AIE) program at the U.S. Department of Education is the ONLY source of dedicated federal education funding to support arts education, a core academic subject of learning proven to improve schools, teaching, and student success in school, work, and life.

In San Diego, the positive impact of the Arts in Education program has been felt in districts as diverse as San Diego Unified, Lakeside, and National City. In all three cases, test scores in language arts and math have improved at schools that started arts education programs with Arts in Education funding.

The unique federal leadership provided through direct competitive AIE grants and national initiatives cannot be replaced by any other funding source and provides essential resources to maximize the benefits of arts education for all students. The arts have too often been shoved to the margins when our schools need them most. Don’t let HR 1891 further narrow the educational opportunities of our nation’s students.

ACT TODAY!  Use the following links or contact detail to communicate with our two San Diego members of the House Education and Workforce Committee. For anyone whose zip code might not be a match for the webform, but who represents a constituency within the district, phone or fax are an alternative.

Feel free to use/edit the following text in your email or letter:

Please ensure that high quality arts education programs can continue to enrich the lives of students in our schools.

I am writing to ask that when the House Education and Workforce committee considers HR 1891, it be amended NOT to eliminate the Arts in Education (AIE) program at the U.S. Department of Education. AIE is the ONLY source of dedicated federal education funding to support arts education, a core academic subject of learning proven to improve schools, teaching, and student success in school, work, and life.  The unique federal leadership provided through direct competitive AIE grants and national initiatives cannot be replaced by any other funding source and provides essential resources to maximize the benefits of arts education for all students.

In San Diego County, AIE funding has launched arts education programs in San Diego Unified, Lakeside School District, and National City with improved test scores being the result. It is only through the dedicated funding of this federal program that local districts have had the resources to initiate arts education programs in classrooms that reap these benefits for students.

The arts have too often been shoved to the margins when our schools need them most.  Don’t let HR 1891 further narrow the educational opportunities of our nation’s students. Protect the Arts in Education program.  Thank you!

Congresswoman Susan Davis:

Webform: https://susandavisforms.house.gov/Forms/WriteYourRep/ (scroll to bottom of page)
Phone: (202) 225-2040
Fax: (202) 225-2948

Congressman Duncan Hunter
Webform: https://forms.house.gov/hunter/webforms/zipauthen_contact.shtml
Phone: (202) 225-5672Fax: (202) 225-0235

Please contact Heather Noonan at hnoonan@americanorchestras.org or Narric Rome nrome@artsusa.org with any questions, to share a copy of your correspondence, and to inform us of the response you’ve heard from your member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Heather and Narric are the Co-Chairs of the national Arts Education Roundtable that leads arts education advocacy efforts in Washington. You may also contact Dalouge Smith, Vice President of California Arts Advocates at dsmith@sdys.org or 619.233.3232 x170.

Heather Noonan
Vice President for Advocacy
League of American Orchestras
t 202 776 0215  f 202 776 0224
hnoonan@americanorchestras..org

Narric W. Rome
Senior Director for Fed. Affairs & Arts Education
Americans for the Arts
202.712.2060 nrome@artsusa.org

Dalouge Smith
President & CEO
San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory
619.233.3232 x170
dsmith@sdys.org