Arts in New York schools suffering, even before projected layoffs

Posted on: March 9, 2011

In Monday’s (3/7) Daily News (New York), Meredith Kolodner writes, “City schools are already down 135 arts teachers—even before the massive layoffs projected for next year, Education Department data show. Last year, public schools employed 2,462 arts teachers, down from 2,597 the year before. This drop erased the slow gains arts education had made over several years. Now an additional 356 arts teachers risk pink slips as part of the proposed layoff of 4,600 teachers citywide—a cut that would bring the number of certified arts teachers down by close to 20% over three years. … Overall, school arts budgets declined by more than 4% last year, and arts supplies budgets crashed by 34%. Still, more than half of elementary schools offered all four arts—dance, visual arts, music and theater—an increase from 41% in 2009. But at the middle school level, only 59% of schools reported that their graduating eighth-graders actually fulfilled the state-mandated requirement for the arts, down from 63% the previous year.”

Posted March 9, 2011