June 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

on June 3, 2021

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for June 2021.


The Case For Universal Pre-K Just Got Stronger “There’s growing evidence that preschool can permanently improve kids’ lives — but it’s not necessarily because it makes them smarter. It seems more related to making them more disciplined and motivated, which is just as important (or perhaps even more important) for their future livelihoods as how well they perform on reading or math tests.” KQED

The Diploma Disparity: Inequity In Higher Education Costs U.S. $956 Billion Per Year, New Report Reveals “It finds that equitizing college completion rates would come with a steep price tag — $3.97 trillion up front — but that an added $956 billion per year in tax revenues from boosted wages would mean that the long-term benefits far outweigh the costs.” The 74

The Lingering Legacy of Redlining on School Funding, Diversity, and Performance “These findings suggest that education policymakers need to consider the historical implications of redlining and past neighborhood inequality on neighborhoods today when designing modern interventions focused on improving life outcomes of students of color.” EdWorkingPapers

‘A Rising Tide That Lifts All Boats’: Having More Immigrant Peers Can Boost Scores For U.S.-Born Students, New Study Finds “The research, which analyzes a decade’s worth of data from over 1.3 million Florida students, links the presence of immigrant classmates with gains in academic performance for students born in the U.S., especially for Black and low-income youth.” The 74

The Benefits of Reading for Fun “It’s important to teach children how to read, and once we do that, we need to make it worthwhile. We’ve got to give them a reason. We’ve got to give them a view once they climb that mountain.” Edutopia

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Gaby PalmadessaJune 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

May 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

on May 3, 2021

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for May 2021.


Eight of Our Favorite Asian American Picture Books May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month and a great way to celebrate that and diversify your child’s bookshelf is by checking out this list! Greater Good Magazine

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Gaby PalmadessaMay 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

April 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

on April 1, 2021

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for April 2021.


The Federal Government Finally Has Data on Schooling During COVID. Here Are 3 Key Takeaways. “A newly released federal survey shows that a huge swath of American school children — particularly students of color — were still learning remotely in January. Of those students, a small but substantial share were getting little or no live instruction from a teacher.” Chalkbeat

As Schools Reopen, Asian American Students are Missing from Classrooms “As school buildings start to reopen, Asian and Asian American families are choosing to keep their children learning from home at disproportionately high rates.” The Washington Post

NCES Data Highlights Pandemic Instruction Differences by Race, Region “Initial findings from the NAEP School Survey — a monthly pilot collection launched by the Institute of Education Sciences and National Center for Education Statistics to gain insight into schools’ available learning opportunities during COVID-19 — show almost half of White students (49%) were more likely to be learning fully in-person in January. Students of color were more likely to be learning in fully remote conditions, with 68% of Asian, 58% of Black and 56% of Hispanic students participating in that mode of learning.” K-12 Dive

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Gaby PalmadessaApril 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

#5WomenArtists for 2021

on March 8, 2021

In honor of International Women’s Day, our staff is highlighting #5WomenArtists whose art inspires them! These women inspire us through their creative work, advocacy, and self-expression. 

Mickalene Thomas


Mickalene Thomas is known for her depictions of Black women in paintings, collage, video, photographs, and installations. Thomas derives inspiration from Western art and pop culture, creating pieces reminiscent of images from art history, particularly those of Henri Matisse and Edouard Manet, that incorporate contemporary Black female figures. Thomas’ hallmark materials include acrylic, enamel, glitter, and rhinestones. Sometimes considered to be nontraditional, these materials are associated with folk art and adornment, compelling the viewer to consider our assumptions about femininity and beauty. Her works center the representation of black women, touching upon themes including power, identity, and beauty.

“To see yourself, and for others to see you, is a form of validation. I’m interested in that very mysterious and mystical way we relate to each other in the world.”

Josephine Baker


Josephine Baker was a dancer and spy! She was one of the most sought-after performers in Paris, and during WWII, she performed for the Nazi army and would pass on secrets she heard while performing in front of the enemy to the French Resistance forces. She transported the confidential information by writing with invisible ink on music sheets. When she returned to the U.S., she refused to perform for segregated audiences, forcing club owners to integrate for her shows. In 1963, she was one of the few women allowed to speak at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The NAACP named May 20 “Josephine Baker Day” in honor of her work as a civil rights advocate.

“The things we truly love stay with us always, locked in our hearts as long as life remains.”

Claude Cahun


Claude Cahun was a French queer photographer, writer, and sculptor. Born Lucy Schwob, she later changed her name three times, eventually settling on the gender-neutral name Claude Cahun. Her works, especially her photographed self-portraits, explore and challenge gender norms and ambiguity. Not only was she deeply involved in the Surrealist art movement of the time, but she also was an activist, secretly distributing anti-Nazi propaganda until she and her partner were eventually caught and imprisoned for years. After their homelands were liberated and they were freed, Cahun was unable to recover from her injuries and it wasn’t until after her death that some of her most revolutionary works were revealed to the world. Today she is remembered for her bravery and self-expression which is exemplified in her artwork that is now getting the long overdue attention it deserves.

“Under this mask, another mask, I will never be finished removing all these faces.”

Shadi Ghadirian


Shadi Ghadirian is an Iranian photographer whose work, mostly portraiture, addresses the boundaries of traditional roles for women in her culture and universally. These often staged photographs of friends and family aim to point at and explore gender roles, identity, and censorship through often exaggerated and sarcastic scenes.

“My series are exactly like a mirror of my life. When I see me, I see the other women like me, my sisters my friends, the women in this country.”

Sandra Cisneros


Sandra Cisneros is a Chicana author who lives in both Mexico and the USA and is known for her many awards and writings including her book The House on Mango Street. Her work aims to highlight working-class people through its exploration of their lives and stories. She also founded two nonprofits, the Mocondo Foundation and the Alfredo Cisneros del Moral Foundation. Her works is internationally recognized and often used as required reading for middle schools and high schools across the nation.

“I am a woman, and I am a Latina. Those are the things that make my writing distinctive. Those are the things that give my writing power.”

Thank you for reading our #5WomenArtists 2021 picks! You can read previous years’ highlighted artists here:

#5WomenArtists 2019
#5WomenArtists 2018
#5WomenArtists 2017

Photo Credits:
South China Morning Post
Chicago Tribune
Chennai Photo Biennale
Los Angeles Times

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Gaby Palmadessa#5WomenArtists for 2021

March 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

on March 3, 2021

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for March 2021.


Arts Integrated Teacher Education Benefits Elementary Students and Teachers Alike Early career teachers attribute much of their differentiation ability to the arts integration class. They also report the joy it brings to both teaching and learning, even within a crowded instructional day. The ability to reach more learners and improve enjoyment are two outcomes well documented in current arts integration literature.” EdNote

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Gaby PalmadessaMarch 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

February 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

on January 28, 2021

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for February 2021.


5 Ed Tech Trends to Watch in 2021 “In the two months after COVID-19 hit, the nation’s school districts used an average of 1,300 education technology tools each month, according to EdTech Insights research showing just how much districts depend on technology to educate students remotely. That change is unlikely to slow down in 2021” K-12 Dive

7 Books To Help Address and Discuss Tough Topics With Kids “De la Peña believes books can explore deep or difficult issues without hitting them head-on. ‘I don’t think the job of a picture book is to answer questions,’ he says. ‘I think it’s just to explore interesting topics.'” KQED

Learning During COVID-19: Initial Findings and 4 Considerations for Policymakers “In the spring, NWEA released a set of projections of the potential academic impact of COVID-19 disruptions modeled on well-documented summer learning loss estimates. Now, with fall data in hand, NWEA is ready to share some key findings and actionable takeaways from recent research based on a sample of more than 8,000 schools across the nation.” EdNote

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Gaby PalmadessaFebruary 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

January 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

on January 7, 2021

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for January 2021.


Our Kids Need Arts Education Now More Than Ever. Here’s What Is Lost Without It “Between months of a pandemic, years of political hostility and centuries of racism, mending America’s wounds will be the work of many hands. In his first 100 days, President-elect Joe Biden should empower school-age children—no fewer than one in six Americans—to help heal themselves, one another and their communities by restoring the arts to our education system.” Yahoo News

When Racial and Gender Bias Is So Darn Obvious — 2 Studies Offer Suggestions for Real Change “Education research is replete with studies that show how implicit bias can influence the success of students Black and white, male and female. But too often, the evidence of that bias and its impact is muddied by other considerations, such as income, where students live and how their families value education. Sometimes, though, the bias is so darn obvious that it’s hard to deny. And the results suggest solutions that can lead to real change. Two studies released in the past month, one on race and one on gender, come to mind.” The 74

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Gaby PalmadessaJanuary 2021 | Arts Ed RECAP

#WhyIGive | Lilia Hall

on December 14, 2020

Lilia Hall is an educator and P.S. ARTS supporter who has volunteered at Family Art Nights and other P.S. ARTS events. Here she is telling us more about how and why she supports P.S. ARTS and advocates for arts education.

All student art is important and you should always be proud of your final product whether it is singing, acting, dancing or the visual arts.

1. Why do you support P.S. ARTS?
Being a retired first grade teacher, I realize how important the arts are to a student’s total development. Working with students who ordinarily don’t have the opportunity to have the arts presented as part of their curriculum is so important. I had the opportunity to work as a volunteer at a P.S. ARTS family night at our local elementary school and saw P.S. ARTS teachers in action. The attendance that night was overwhelming and the art project was so well received by all the families. Reaching out to the families at a night event is also a valuable part of the P.S. ARTS program besides the in-school presentations.

2. Do you have any specific memories of the arts or an arts teacher that impacted your life?
I was fortunate enough during my teaching career to be able to include the arts as part of the curriculum. We sang, danced, and worked on a variety of art projects using different media. I taught first grade and worked with talented students who aspired to be artists. Some did and I would like to think I inspired them a little.

3. If you could give our P.S. ARTS students one piece of advice, what would it be?

All student art is important and you should always be proud of your final product whether it is singing, acting, dancing, or the visual arts.

Thank you, Lilia Hall

Consider supporting P.S. ARTS like Lilia Hall before the end of the year to help ensure our students have access to arts education. Make a gift today.

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P.S. ARTS#WhyIGive | Lilia Hall

November 2020 | Arts Ed RECAP

on November 9, 2020

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for November 2020.

Americans for the Arts Issues Statement Congratulating President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris “This was a historic election with a record-high popular vote electing Joe Biden to become the 46th president of the United States and Kamala Harris, as both the first woman and woman of color, to be elected as vice president. The election was a triumph for our nation and for its progress towards democracy, racial justice, and equity.” Americans for the Arts


More Than Art in Art Education “The contributions of art education extend far beyond the school walls. Children learn skills they can use in their future careers, and older adults rediscover the joy they experienced as children.” Inside Indiana Business

Pandemic Takes a Swipe at Fine Arts Education, but Might Just Prove How Much it’s Worth “Students of all ages are in a different kind of bind. Their own exposure to the fine arts — music, visual arts, dance and theater — is deemed so important to professional educators that it is written into the Pennsylvania School Code. This is not because the commonwealth wants to churn out millions of professional artists, but because study after study has shown that exposure to the arts is crucial to students’ development in just about everything else: cognitive, emotional and social development, critical thinking, problem solving, independence, resilience, risk taking and more.” Go Erie

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Gaby PalmadessaNovember 2020 | Arts Ed RECAP

October 2020 | Arts Ed RECAP

on October 7, 2020

Arts Education RECAP

Read all the research, news, and policy in our arts education RECAP for October 2020.


Creativity Is Not a Soft Skill — It Is a Must-Have Mindset for the 21st Century. How Teachers Can Nurture It in Their Students “Creativity comprises the behavior, actions and interpretations of how we relate to and experience the world. It is a habit, and one we can exercise. It is not a soft skill, so it’s time to stop thinking about creativity as nice to have and start remembering that creativity is essential.” The 74

New Research Report Reflects Importance of Arts Education “The 2018-2019 Partnering Arts, Communities, and Education PACE Project Report reflects a collection of data on student growth and shows that, through arts integration, students are gaining knowledge, skills, and understanding in the arts and in literacy skills. This research demonstrates that the arts create important pathways to learning for students and that learning through the arts produces long-lasting, positive impacts.” WBIW

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Gaby PalmadessaOctober 2020 | Arts Ed RECAP