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Quinlan will treat teachers to appreciation day for their commitment to the arts

POSTED: August 29, 2011 1:30 a.m.

With the end of August just around the corner, many folks in the art world are happy to see the picture that’s already been painted for the upcoming month.

At a time when many funding for most extras were being carved out of school budgets nationwide, the U.S. Congress passed a resolution acknowledging the vital role that arts play in the educational system.

That acknowledgment came in the shape of the approved House Resolution 275, which established the week following the second Sunday in September as the official Arts in Education Week.

"... Arts education, comprising a rich array of disciplines including dance, music, theatre, media arts, literature, design, and visual arts, is a core academic subject and an essential element of a complete and balanced education for all students," the resolution reads.

The week this year is officially from Sept. 12-18, but the Quinlan Visual Arts Center staff are starting the celebration early with an appreciation day for fine arts educators.

The event is from 4-6 p.m. Thursday at the visual arts center at 514 Green St. NE, Gainesville.

"This is an opportunity for us to honor them for all that they do. It’s also an opportunity for them to socialize with their peers and tell us how we can help them," said Amanda McClure, Quinlan executive director.

"This is our opportunity to advocate for them, but more than anything, it’s about us showing our appreciation."

The free, two-hour event will include food and prizes.

McClure will also be sharing information about art supply funding opportunities for educators.

The success of the Quinlan’s annual summer arts camps for kids is evidence of how hungry local students are for arts education and a testament to the key role that arts educators play in schools, McClure says.

"Each year, we see a steady increase in campers," McClure said.

"Our kids are definitely interested in the arts."

In Gainesville City and Hall County schools, arts programs are thriving.

For instance, last school year, the former McEver Elementary School became the McEver Arts Academy.

It is a charter school that uses dance, music and the visual arts to engage students while they learn the Georgia Performance Standards — the state-mandated curriculum.

Just last week, the school was visited by a group of artists who used dancing and painting to help the students learn math and language arts lessons.


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