Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Arts Advocacy Day 2013: The Short and the Long
AEAI President Sidney Allen and I were at the State House last Thursday and this was the seventh time since 2005 that I have attended an Arts Advocacy Day event at the state capitol. I always enjoy this event. I had the chance to visit with Governor Pence for a few moments and I shared with him Bob Sabol's excellent policy analysis for art education advocates, parents, citizens and policy makers. I spent most of my day with House Republicans and had the chance to talk with Vice Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee: District 78 Rep. Suzanne Crouch, District Rep. 53 Bob Cherry, District 60 Rep. Peggy Mayfield, District 47 Rep. John Price, District 70 Rep. Rhonda Rhoads and District 15 Rep. Hal Slager. I basically thanked them for any consideration for improving education funding because since 2009, we have seen cuts to many art programs across the state. Why does it matter? Creativity with a capitol C. Creativity matters because the art room is the center for creativity in our schools. Creativity matters because children thrive in schools where fine arts programs are in place. Creativity matters because the affects of creative experience are critically important to children's psycho-emotional and intellectual development. Creativity matters because professionals and entrepreneurs all across the economic spectrum need it to stay relevant in the world wide economy of the 21st Century. Creativity matters because it is a vital component of our state's dynamic economy. And creativity matters because it is every American child's right to an education that endows him or her with skills related to divergent and creative thinking.