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The Year in Review: MAAE Highlights in 2010-2011

MAAE Kennedy Center Project Grant: Arts Integration Academy — November 2010—April 2010

As part of the work funded by the partnership with the J. F. Kennedy Center, the MAAE provided a no-cost Arts Integration Academy to six school sites across Mississippi, in partnership with five Regional Education Service Centers and the Mississippi Department of Education. Each school demonstrated a desire to learn about arts integration as an approach to teaching and learning. The Academy consisted of a two-day immersion and follow-up event. On the Teaching Artist Residency Day, students participated in demonstration lessons with two teaching artists who utilized subject standards with visual and performing arts standards with classes of students while teachers observed. The all day Saturday Professional Development workshop for site staff members offered debriefing and reflection time on the residency experience; research-based information and best practices on Arts Integration as a teaching and learning model, and a planning session using state standards (MS Frameworks in visual and performing arts and other core academic subjects) to develop one or more Arts Integration lesson plan units for implementation during the year. The schools sent teams of teachers and administrator to the MAAE Forum in April 2011 to share and celebrate their Arts Integration journey and network with the Teaching Artists/coaches to plan next steps. This model will continue as a key component of the MAAE advocacy to ensure arts-in-education throughout the state.

21st Century Schools for 21st Century Students

This Workshop was developed and presented in 2010 through Kennedy Center support. Requests for this workshop continued in 2011 through the Regional Service Centers for K-12 Teachers and Administrators as schools move into the second decade of the new millennium. The key question is: What are critical characteristics and multiple literacies that move our schools from the 20th Century into the 21st Century? This interactive workshop explores the paradigm shift and essential steps needed to adequately prepare millennium students for their future through interactive, collaborative exercises, technology information, and a model interdisciplinary lesson. Topics include brain compatible learning, Depth of Knowledge, 21st Century Skills and Literacies, Changing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) to STEAM (incorporating Arts with the STEM areas). MAAE, which advocates for balanced curriculum and rich arts experiences for all students in Mississippi, offers this workshop.

Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Leadership Meeting — February 2011

The Mississippi Alliance for Arts Education is a member of the Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Network, the national organization of state alliances dedicated to a common purpose: promoting arts education. Once a year representatives of the MAAE attend the conference of the KCAAEN in Washington, D.C.  This year, Mississippi was represented by thirteen advocates, including four MAAE officers (with two supported through Kennedy Center funds and two through a MAC mini-grant), eight Partner in Education members, and one MAC representative. During the Annual Meeting week, the Mississippi representatives spent a day on Capitol Hill meeting with Senators Cochran and Wicker, and Representatives Palazzo, Harper, and Nunnelee. Only Representative Thompson was unavailable for a face-to-face meeting.  Since 2003 an MAAE member has had the privilege to serve in an elected position on the KCAAEN’s Network Leadership Committee, the administrative component of the organization. In addition, other members serve on committees at the national level. Such representation is a significant accomplishment for the MAAE.  Mississippi has benefited immeasurably from its ongoing partnership with the Kennedy Center.

Low Capacity Alliance Opportunity

In January 2011, MAAE began a year-long affiliation with the Kennedy Center as one of three Low Capacity Alliances selected nationwide from an application process to work with consultants Senator Stan Rosenberg and John Abodeely. The selected Alliances faced common issues of budget, staff, fundraising, and demands on volunteer board. The MAAE Board met with the consultants for a day-long retreat at the Lauren Rogers Museum to assess our status, determine priorities, and begin a plan of action to expand capacity as Mississippi’s statewide advocacy organization. The MAAE Board proposed a Plan of Action to chart goals and steps. Thereafter, on a monthly basis, Executive Director Penny Wallin, Financial Officer Jodie Engle (and now Shannon Frost), and President Elect Mark Brown participated in conference calls with the consultants offering guidance and suggestions. After many discussions on our mission of advocacy, the consultants spearheaded an Advocacy Conference Call Meeting in July, which was opened to MAAE Board. Participants studied Stan’s definitive work, “Cultural Advocacy” in Fundamentals of Arts Management and gained fresh ideas on advocacy, including generating and using lists of partners/funders/sponsors, expanding grant sources, updating website and increasing use of Facebook and Twitter messaging, and developing a regional model to better serve all areas of Mississippi. MAAE Board member Joe Johnson commented:

"We understand arts education to be the cornerstone of a well-developed society and as a major part in the economy in general. Our tasks are to 1) deliver a clear message and redouble the pressure on schools and funders to keeps arts education at the forefront of discussion and implementation; 2) build relationships with individuals and organizations to connect arts education to school success (e.g., creative, innovative thinkers who can problem-solve and be global citizens) and to the economy by demonstrating the value of arts in education and life."

 With the second half of the Low Capacity Alliance Opportunity to continue into the new fiscal year, MAAE focuses on Advocacy through partnerships/collaboration, capacity-building, and fundraising.

Arts Day at the Capitol — March 22, 2011

The MAAE joins the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC) and other arts advocates to sponsor Arts Day at the Capitol. This annual event is a time set aside for visiting with state legislators and the public on arts issues. Significant budget cuts statewide in recent years have stimulated the need for a special response in support of arts programs. In preparation, the MAAE and others joined with the MAC to encourage public awareness and a positive legislative response by direct contact, and/or e-mail and letter-writing. Our new poster “Arts are Nature’s Way… Why have courses without the Arts?” and a letter from our MAAE President were hand-delivered to members of the House and Senate.

Arts Front & Center Forum — April 29 30, 2011

Day One of the annual MAAE Arts Front and Center Forum convened on April 29, 2011, in Jackson, Mississippi at the new Children’s Museum. This year the Forum opened with Mississippi’s IMAGINATION Conversation, one of 50 state conversations held in collaboration with the Lincoln Center Institute. After a welcome by Children’s Museum Executive Director, Susan Garrard, and inspirational words by Dancer Nicole Marquez, a lively, informative panel discussion followed, which was moderated by Betsy Bradley from the Mississippi Art Museum. Panelists Mayor Johnny DuPree, Melissa Medley, Dr. Lynn House, Philip Wright, Malcolm White, NunoErin, and Nicole Marquez spoke on the importance of imagination in government, business/economic development, education, non-profit/service, and the arts respectively. The conversation was recorded and forwarded to the Lincoln Center as Mississippi’s contribution to America’s Imagination Summit in July. MAAE was honored to host this important discussion and fulfill the goal of the Forum, which is to consider the challenges and embark upon creative and innovative solutions in education by 1) raising awareness and appreciation of the impact of an arts education on a child’s life; 2) offering fresh insights and understanding about how schools can become more involved in arts education; 3) expanding parent and community understanding and involvement, investment, and support for arts in education; and 4) recognizing and honoring teachers, students, parents, administrators, and community for their contributions to education and advocacy of the arts across Mississippi. Day One concluded with the annual silent arts auction and an invitation to participate in the workshops at Power APAC on Day Two.

Day Two offered a menu of arts integration workshops, student showcases in piano, voice, visual art, and dance, and networking time. Power APAC Principal Marlynn Martin, along with her faculty and students, were gracious hosts as MAAE celebrated arts-in-education with a day of learning and sharing opportunities for participants from every part of Mississippi, including representatives from the Arts Integration Academy schools.

MAAE Arts Education Awards — April 29, 2011

Each year, the MAAE honors schools, cultural institutions, programs, and individuals for their positive contributions to arts education in the state. The 11th annual Arts Education Awards Recognition program was held during the evening of the MAAE Arts Front and Center Forum, April 29, 2011, at the new Children’s Museum in Jackson. After a Meet and Greet Reception with MAAE pianist Tito Lanier, over 100 participants attended the Arts Award Banquet. The Power APAC String Quartet entertained during the dinner. Mississippi student artwork, organized by MAAE Visual Artist Gloria Johnson, surrounded the Awards Hall. MAAE President Elect Mark Brown served as Master of Ceremonies. Dr. Lonnie Edwards, JPS Superintendent, and the JPS School Board were given special recognition as one of 12 finalists in the Kennedy Center National School Board Award for 2011. MAAE Awards presented included: Student Artist of the Year, Stephen Barnes, Power APAC; School of Excellence Award, Tupelo Elementary School; Thad Cochran Distinguished Arts Educator Award in Dance, Elizabeth Sullivan, Power APAC; Thad Cochran Distinguished Arts Educator Award in Visual Arts, Pam Kinsey, Power APAC; Outstanding Project Director Award, Clair Huff, Poplar Springs Elementary; Higher Education Award, Dr. Sallie Harper, MSU; Exemplary Arts Service Award, Judi Holifield; Arts Advocacy, Parents for Public Schools/Ask for More Arts; Distinguished Community Arts Agency, VSA Mississippi. Original pottery, designed by MAAE Artist Rachel Ballentine, was presented to each award winner. Table decorations, created by a joint endeavor between Power APAC students and JCJC Art Students, were given as door prizes. The MAAE believes this awards program will not only continue to grow, but will also increase public awareness of high quality arts education programs across the state and the accomplishments of students who are the beneficiaries of them.

Kennedy Center / National Symphony Orchestra Summer Music Institute — July 2011

An outstanding young musician was selected to participate in the 2011 Kennedy Center/National Symphony Orchestra Summer Music Institute being held in Washington, D.C. Roselie Doerkson, a violinist from Oxford, Mississippi, was invited to represent Mississippi for a month this summer, working and studying with members of the NSO in Washington, D.C. at the Kennedy Center. Students who are juniors/seniors in high school or freshmen/sophomores in college may submit applications and audition tapes for consideration each January. Applications are reviewed and up to five students from the state may be nominated, though only one is usually selected. The MAAE sponsors student participation in the institute with the assistance of arts patrons. This program has stimulated communication among musicians across the state about opportunities available to students at the national level.

Teaching Artist Training Workshop

In November, MAAE conducted professional development training for teaching artists who wished to work with teachers and students in K-12 classrooms. The format of the training followed the Kennedy Center Teaching Artist model and has been supported over the last four years by the DANA Foundation. Mississippi Teaching Artists Althea Jerome and Kathryn Lewis developed and presented the workshop. The goals of the workshop were 1) to orient artists interested in serving students as Teaching Artists by providing opportunities to collaborate with established Teaching Artists, and 2) to increase the number of artists included in the Mississippi Arts Commission’s Arts in Education Roster. Subsequently, teams of Teaching Artists served six schools in every region of Mississippi by providing the Arts Integration Academy Series in 2011.

Mississippi Arts Commission Whole Schools Initiative — July 18 21 2011

The MAAE works closely with the Whole Schools Initiative (WSI) and its host institution, the Mississippi Arts Commission, by providing speakers, field advisors, presenters, and by promoting partner events. MAAE publicizes accomplishments of the initiative, provides technical assistance at statewide and local venues, and facilitates the involvement of higher education in the ongoing work of the initiative. The WSI provides a venue for MAAE advocacy and membership activities at its annual Whole Schools Institute, a week-long gathering for over 300 teachers, administrators, and stakeholders. The 2011 WSI was held in Meridian at the Mississippi State University Riley Center for Education and Performing Arts on July 18 - 21. This federally recognized arts education model continues to bring favorable attention to the state, and has inspired school districts outside the program to seek ways to implement the model in their own districts.

Ongoing — MSArtsAlliance.com

This well maintained website provides up-to-date advocacy tools and information at http://www.msartsalliance.com. From local and state arts-in-education news, to announcements, awards, calendar, legislative updates, and important documents, the website is a major means of disseminating information for the MAAE. A photo gallery celebrates accomplishments in MAAE programming. In addition, links to state arts organizations and institutions as well as to arts education resources are available. Individuals who wish to attend various MAAE-sponsored programs may also register online through access to the website.

Ongoing — FACEBOOK

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