S2S: Journal Reflection #4

What is the most important or valuable thing that you learned at the August rendezvous about community engagement?

It was incredibly valuable for our team to witness the benefits of grassroots engagement while at the August rendezvous. We experienced how the arts ecosystem affected and sustained a wide variety of individuals and organizations in Sisters. A common theme we noticed was the importance and emphasis on holding public performances and festivals. The Sisters Folk Festival and Sisters Quilt Show impact thousands of people. It is crucial to hold events for the public so that people can participate and witness the work that is being created in your program.

How is it impacting how you think about community engagement for your project?

Our goal for the year is to engage the community through high profile public art installations that will draw attention to the school, our partnership, the possibilities for collaboration and the volunteer opportunities. We will be focusing our energy on growing our volunteer, intern and artist roster through a grassroots approach to assist with the sustainability of our project. We want to emphasize to the community that Open School North is the space for media artists, art organizations and art advocates to collaborate with and share their talents.

Below is a mock up of the GIF-iti mural that internationally renowned artist, INSA will be creating in collaboration with students in September 2015. We feel that this project is a beautiful example of engaging the community through public art.

OMM--MockUp1- still


Who are the most important community members that your project needs to engage in order to build a culture of arts appreciation?

Every member of the community plays a crucial role in building a culture of arts appreciation. However, we feel strongly that in order to be successful in this initiative you must have support from the school’s principal. Without the support of the principal the community partner would be unable to provide resources, the administration would not be bought in and the students and staff would not be given time to integrate art into the culture of the school.

Who is not “at the table” for your project and needs to be included?

Parents as well as board members and administrative staff as greatly as we’d like for them to be.

How will you include those community members this year?

We have found that the best way to include community members in our project is through events and presentations. We will be hosting a larger amount of public events to engage parents, administrative staff and the board so that they can see our project in action.

How will you know that your community is engaged in arts education, and whether you are making progress towards building engagement in the coming year?

We will employ a variety of qualitative and quantitative methods to measure the the success of our year 2 work using the, ‘Studio to School’ evaluation rubric we created during the August rendezvous. You can view the full rubric here: S2SYear2EvaluationRubric

Community engagement


Our level of community engagement ranges from working exclusively with the school to engaging all partners in multiple aspects of our programming. This will be measured by:

– event attendance

– partner involvement with program (volunteering / internships, etc.)

– # of impressions public art receives


Arts Education Delivery


Our level of success in regards to arts education delivery begins with programming that is neither culturally or socially relevant to fully integrated programming with social and cultural relevance. This will be measured by:


-Focus groups



Student Participation


The level of student participation will be measured by:


-Focus groups



Student Learning


The level of student learning will be measured by:

-Student Learning Success Rubric

-Teacher assessment


-Focus Groups



-Taylor Neitzke, Resident Media Artist