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ERIC Number: EJ1087484
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1063-2913
For What Purpose the Arts? An Analysis of the Mission Statements of Urban Arts High Schools in Canada and the United States
Gaztambide-Fernández, Rubén; Nicholls, Rachael; Arráiz-Matute, Alexandra
Arts Education Policy Review, v117 n1 p29-42 2016
While general arts programs have declined in many schools across the United States and Canada, the number of specialized art programs in public secondary schools has swelled since the 1980s. While this increase is often celebrated by arts educators, questions about the justification of specialized arts programs are rarely raised, and their value is often taken for granted. In this article, we examine the mission statements of eighty-four specialized arts programs across two countries to examine the ideas, values, and commitments that are expressed in these public statements. In addition to a close thematic analysis, we describe how these mission statements reflect different conceptions of the role of the arts in education and consider the ways in which arguments that seek to broaden access to the arts are combined with the goal of serving a narrow subset of the student population. We argue that analyzing mission statements provides a clearer picture of the ideas that shape these programs, and that in order to foster an informed public conversation about the purpose and value of an education in the arts, educators committed to the arts must engage in this serious discussion.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada; United States
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A