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ERIC Number: EJ935022
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Mar
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 17
ISSN: ISSN-0004-3125
Leadership in Art Education: Taking Action in Schools and Communities
Freedman, Kerry
Art Education, v64 n2 p40-45 Mar 2011
One of the traditional privileges for teachers in the United States has been control over the curriculum. Unlike most countries in the world, the United States does not have a national curriculum "per se", enabling teachers to make curriculum decisions that most benefit local students. However, the Elementary and Secondary Act, also known as the No Child Left Behind Act, has acted as a national curriculum policy by enabling school administrators to conceive of a curriculum that privileges reading and math, and neglects arts programming. Research has demonstrated that art teachers are being pushed into teaching reading and math skills in their classes. High schools that do not continually improve their students' reading and math test scores run the risk of losing whole art departments. And in junior high and middle schools, many students are allowed to take only one quarter or less of art. It is time to reclaim the curriculum. To do this, creative leadership by teachers, professors, and community educators who are willing to take action against policies and managerial decisions that diminish students' opportunities for learning through art is needed. For over a generation, scholars in education have been pointing to the disempowerment of teachers in the wake of public policy makers', school administrators', and other stakeholders' efforts to countermand the expertise of teachers and undermine the importance of teachers' knowledge about their students. Now, art educators need to draw on their expertise to ensure that they are included in educational decision-making in schools and out. The most important first step of art education leadership is to possess a clear vision of the future. That vision should be related to the leading edge of the field, reflect best practices, and be written in a curriculum rationale. This article discusses the critical components of successful leadership. Promoting any type of educational innovation takes courage and confidence. But effective leadership can transform a program and can help to protect it. The author suggests some places to start.
National Art Education Association. 1916 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191. Tel: 703-860-8000; Fax: 703-860-2960; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A