MAEIA at 10 Celebration: Moving Arts Education Forward

By Heather Vaughan-Southard

After a life in dance, it is hard for me to consider starting any new phase of work without saying a silent “5, 6, 7, 8.” We are rolling closer to MAEIA at 10 on June 22, where we collectively exhale in gratitude and celebration of the last 10 years of impressive work. We also roll closer to a collective inhale that launches the next decade of arts education initiatives.

Over the last decade, we have:

So, what’s on the agenda for the next decade? As I see it: More, better, and all together.

As part of our MAEIA at 10 activities, we will be convening a panel discussion of invested partners each with a specific role and responsibility to ensuring a bright, art-filled reality for the state’s children. The panelists represent Michigan Department of Education, Michigan Arts and Culture Council, Michigan Education Association, and of course, MAEIA.

Facilitated by Dale Schmid, former Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator of the New Jersey Department of Education (and a fellow 5, 6, 7, 8er!), the panel discussion will guide us through a series of questions and considerations.

  • How will we maintain and create up to date and relevant resources to support instruction and assessment in the arts?
  • How can we connect funding to continuing improvement planning in the arts?
  • What does small “a” and big “A” advocacy look like and who is leading it?
  • How are we convening arts education ambassadors as a community of change, promise, and action?
  • How are we ensuring that what we are creating is culturally responsible and embodied?

We will listen to responses by the panelists and will also be invited to consider deeply and to share how these questions guide our own work in the roles and responsibilities each of us holds in championing arts education. You are a participant in this community, and we would love to know how you see your role and responsibility in contributing to this work.

Next steps:

As for MAEIA, we are focused on continuing the development of high-quality resources for arts instruction and assessment, holding space for arts education ambassadors from the classroom level to state leadership and legislators, and creating evolving professional learning that responds to the needs of the educators we serve.

The vision: More outstanding resources, better statewide organization and representation, all moving together.

C’mon. Let’s go. 5, 6, 7, 8!

Heather Vaughan-Southard is the MAEIA Professional Learning Director, owner of HVS Movement Studies, and part of the training team of the Polyvagal Institute.

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