Today I had the amazing opportunity to attend the Art's in Basic Curriculum Project's Peer-to-Peer Principal's Network where South Carolina's Superintendent of Education, Molly Spearman as well as Dr. Earl Franks from the National Association of Elementary School Principals spoke.
Molly spoke about her love for the arts ever since she was in school. She went on to receive her B.A. in Music Education at Lander College. Molly was even a music teacher for 18 years! She talked about the importance of the arts programs in our schools and how they will help students prepare for college and beyond. I even had a chance to talk with her after her presentation. I got to talk to her about my participation with the arts and in the community. I'm so glad I was able to pick her brain to answer a few questions I had about the arts and my involvement.
Dr. Earl Franks talked about his love for the arts as a young boy and the important role his teachers played in his life. He said they really shaped his love for education and how they helped him get to where he is today. He talked about the different "soft skills" that the arts give children such as teamwork, compassion, hard work, determination, and many more. He talked about how these "soft skills" are what employers are looking for in the work force today.
Overall this past week has been so informative and reassuring for the future of the arts in South Carolina. You often hear about the negative things going on with arts education such as funding being cut, but it has been such a pleasure hearing all of the wonderful things happening in our schools and meeting the people that are making them happen! Thank you again to the South Carolina Arts Alliance as well as the ABC Project for having such a wonderful Arts Advocacy Week! I can't wait for my next involvement with these two organizations!