Recently, schools across the country have had issues providing kids with fine arts classes due to a shrinking school budget.
Art education in public schools usually includes any combination of dance, music, drama and theatre and visual art classes. There are many benefits to these classes such as helping kids express themselves, improve scores in core classes and the fact that it basically solves problems.
Years of research show that it’s closely linked to almost everything that we as a country want for our kids and demand from our schools: academic achievement, social and emotional development, and civic engagement.
Involvement in these art programs can raise scores in math and reading. Art learning has also been shown to improve motivation, concentration, confidence, compassion, and teamwork.
This hasn’t been too big of an issue here at North Central. Administration has done an excellent job of funding the fine arts programs and making sure they’re available to everyone.
Although they’ve kept up with it now, as soon as money gets tight those programs are on the short lists of firsts to go. Schools take pride in making their core classes a main priority rather than spending money and funding courses that only select few get involved in.
Budget cuts have come drastically for schools across the U.S. It’s estimated that since 2008, more than 80% of schools nationwide experienced cuts to their budget. During the 2000 school year, 20% of schools offered dance, art, and theatre classes, during the 2010 school year only 3% of schools offered those programs.
I am not involved in any fine arts courses, but I do see the importance of them. Studies have shown that if a student is enrolled in at least one fine art course their grades could increase and it builds a higher knowledge. Schools should try to cut budgets in other things in order to keep these programs, but I do not believe they should be a number one priority. I think we need to increase our core class programs and spend more on keeping the school nice.