White House expands Turnaround Arts initiative to bring the arts to young people

Posted on: May 25, 2016

“One of Michelle Obama’s key arts programs will continue after she leaves the White House,” writes Krissah Thompson in Wednesday’s (5/25) Washington Post. “Management of Turnaround Arts, started five years ago to bring high-quality music, theater, dance and visual arts instruction to underperforming schools, will be housed at the Kennedy Center and carry its imprimatur. The first lady plans to make the announcement Wednesday during her second White House talent show, starring students from the at-risk schools adopted by Turnaround Arts. The program—now in 49 schools across the country—is based on the idea that arts should have a central place in the education of all children, not just a luxury for wealthy districts.… Michelle Obama, in particular, has supported projects that link children from less-privileged backgrounds to the arts through events at the White House as well as underwriting arts classes at low-income elementary and middle schools.… The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities said it will bring in the Kennedy Center as a partner to make sure the Turnaround Arts program is not dismantled.… The first lady has credited early exposure to the arts with boosting her own accomplishments.”

Posted May 25, 2016

Pictured: First Lady Michelle Obama dances on stage with student performers at the 2015 White House Turnaround Arts Talent Show. Photo by Carolyn Kaster / AP