Shalom Life | January 30, 2015

Sarah Jessica Parker Joins Initiative to Teach Kids Arts

Parker joins other celebrities in helping to turn around the nations worst-performing schools

By: Ashley Baylen

Published: April 24th, 2012 in Culture » Society » News

Sarah Jessica Parker Joins Initiative to Teach Kids Arts

The President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities has unveiled a new ‘Turnaround Arts’ initiative as a pilot project for eight of the United States’ worst-performing schools. With officials from the White House and U.S Department of Educations, the Obama administrations plans to turn around the selected schools by integrating arts education.

Sarah Jessica Parker, Kerry Washington, and Forest Whitaker are a few of the celebrities involved in the initiative. The Sex and the City actress will adopt a school in Portland.

The eight schools selected are high-poverty elementary and middle schools. They were among the lowest-performing schools in each of their states and have qualified for about $14 million in federal ‘School Improvement Grants’ under the Obama administration.

‘Turnaround Arts’ is a two-year initiative with the goal to demonstrate how arts education can help reduce behavioral problems and increase attendance, interest, and academic success.

The celebrities involved in the program will present arts-based programs to the students and teachers, celebrate their successes, and help implement community partnerships and fundraise within their appointed city.

"It's really hard to find anybody who says arts education is bad for kids," said Rachel Goslins, Executive Director of the Presidential Arts Committee.

"But there is a huge amount of skepticism that the arts could be an important part of the solution in these schools."

Recent research demonstrates that arts education can greatly improve graduation rates and overall ‘school spirit’. Unfortunately, the high-poverty schools are 50 percent less likely to offer any arts or music programs or classes.

The programs implemented will not only allow children to participate in arts classes and programs within their own school, but will permit the students to go to art galleries, museums, and other cultural institutions that, up until this point, they have never visited.

Actress Kerry Washington grew up in the Bronx at the heights of the crack epidemic. She explains how important the arts were in her childhood.

“I literally remember walking to dance class, walking those two blocks from my house and seeing crack vials on the street,” Washington began.

“I just think, if I wasn’t walking to dance class, where would I have been walking? I just don’t know.”

“I come from a great family, but it’s easy to fall through the cracks without those resources around you, without those extra things that get you excited about learning,” Washington continued.

Arts education not only teaches children a variety of skills, but also encourages accountability, confidence, ability to ‘think outside the box’, creativity, and how to collaborate with others.

Chelsea Handler is Topless on Camel Wearing Israeli Flag Pasties Chelsea Handler is Topless on Camel Wearing Israeli Flag Pasties TrendingRoseanne Barr For Next Season of ‘Dancing With The Stars’? Roseanne Barr For Next Season of ‘Dancing With The Stars’? TrendingAdam Lambert Announces Album Title Adam Lambert Announces Album Title Trending
 

Israeli Startups Collectively Raised Over $900 Million Last Week

January 30, 2015 | By Viva Sarah Press
Israeli Startups Collectively Raised Over $900 Million Last Week

Various startups in Israel raised $910 million through acquisitions and funding rounds in a seven-day period

Read More

Woody Allen’s Joaquin Phoenix-Starrer is Called ‘Irrational Man’

January 30, 2015 | By Ashley Baylen
Woody Allen’s Joaquin Phoenix-Starrer is Called ‘Irrational Man’

Sony Pictures Classics have announced the name of Allen's upcoming film.

Read More

Steven Spielberg’s Daughter, Sasha, to Star in Snapchat Web Series

January 30, 2015 | By Ashley Baylen
Steven Spielberg’s Daughter, Sasha, to Star in Snapchat Web Series

Spielberg will co-star with John Goldwyn's daughter, Emily.

Read More

Roseanne Barr on Bill Cosby:” It Surprises Nobody”

January 30, 2015 | By Ashley Baylen
Roseanne Barr on Bill Cosby:” It Surprises Nobody”

The comedian believes Cosby should apologize.

Read More

Remembering Myra Kraft on Super Bowl Sunday

January 30, 2015 | By Jason Stverak, JNS.org
Remembering Myra Kraft on Super Bowl Sunday

What will be missing for the second time in recent New England Patriots' Super Bowl memory this Sunday is Myra Kraft sitting with her husband, owner Robert Kraft

Read More

Wounded Syrians Treated in Israel: Eliminate Hezbollah

January 30, 2015 | By Hassan Shaalan
Wounded Syrians Treated in Israel: Eliminate Hezbollah

"We were taught that Israel is the enemy of Syria and all Arab countries. Now that I stayed here, I believe the opposite is true; Israel is better than other Arab countries, which don't admit wounded people," says one injured Syrian

Read More

Jewish Hall Of Fame: Kenny Bernstein

January 30, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Jewish Hall Of Fame: Kenny Bernstein

The famous "King of Speed" is known as one of the most important figures in NASCAR history

Read More

Postcard from Einstein's Sole Trip to Israel Sells At Auction

January 30, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
Postcard from Einstein's Sole Trip to Israel Sells At Auction

Almost a century after the physicist's trip to the Holy Land, postcard sells for $56,000

Read More

More Headlines