Year 5 is a meaningful year.  We have so much to celebrate with the depth of programming offered to all our students, yet we know we are missing some key people.  We know this because we have forgotten to look at who (in a race category) is engaged with the year-long art classes, after school programs, or “advanced” classes.  Therefore, we want to measure to what extent our current  programs are serving our students of color.  In addition, we are missing who our stakeholders are.  We want to measure who exactly, both inside and outside our campus walls, supports arts education.  In order to sustain the depth this grant has created, we will have to be very mindful about who our partners are, and how to make sure we are working together to continue offering high quality arts programs.

This year, we will measure two questions.  The first is “to what extent are the programs at our school serving our students of color”?  Not only has our school team been awakened by equality and equity through the awesome professional development training last spring, but we have continued our training at our own school through our local Educational Services District.  This topic is heavy on our hearts and want to make sure we are reaching all populations of our student body.  Year 4, we collected a lot of data on how many students participated in what programs, total hours of programming provided, performances and exhibits, but we did not break it down into race groups.  This year, we are going to take a step further and measure who is participating and at what levels.  We want to know if we have any unidentified barriers that effect student of color from participating?  Are we offering arts education sensitive to their culture?  This data will help us fine tune and make sure we are providing to all populations, equally.

In order to sustain and offer arts education to all populations, we need help.  The second question we will measure is “Who supports arts education at AMS and in what ways”?  We need to identify who is working with current teachers/staff and what are they doing.  Who in the community can offer in-depth opportunities for our advanced students who want to deepen their craft and entrepreneur skills.  Our year four data does not look very strong with identifying community partnerships.   We predict a lot more community support and integration is occurring, but we really want to focus and collect data on who and how community partners are supporting arts integration at AMS.  To do this, we plan to create simple inventory sheets to hand out to all teachers.  We will have our Visual Arts Teacher, Christy Boyd, act as the Arts Integration specialist.  She will touch base with staff at the end of each trimester to see who and how arts was integrated in core classes.  We will also have our arts teachers complete the inventory with who helps with daily lessons and programming.

In addition to collecting data for these two new questions, we will continue to collect the total number of students participating in each of our programs; band, orchestra, culinary arts, visual arts, advanced year-long art class, video production/digital arts (with a new computer animation program offered this year), and any after school art programs.  We will also continue to collect data in each class on standards-based Essential Learning Rubrics and proficiency scores.  This is a rigorous assessment system that each teacher uses on student skills.

In summary, year 5 will take a step deeper into helping us make sure we are providing equitable programming to all student populations.  We already know that each student is participating in arts education.  Now we want to know who is and is not able to take advantage of the more advanced arts programs and why.  In addition, we will focus on who our community partners are currently and who we need to partner with.  In collecting data on current arts integration projects (the who and what), we will be able to use these specific details to use storytelling in our fundraising efforts for sustainability.  Thankfully, the year 4 evaluation report has guided us to these two big evaluation questions.  Who inside our walls is not being served equally, and who and what, both inside and outside our walls, supports arts education at AMS.