State Coalition Forms to Advance Arts Education in Indiana

Mike Lawson • News • August 29, 2016

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A statewide network of arts leaders and advocates met to help insure student access to music and arts education in Indiana. Led by a steering committee made up of NAMM Chairman Mark Goff of Paige’s Music, Mike Kamphius, managing director, division of education services at Conn-Selmer, John Wittmann, manager of education and artist relations for Yamaha, Lane Velayo, executive director of the Indiana Music Educators Association and Matt Carter, vice president of destination development for Visit Indy, the newly formed Indiana Arts Education Network (IAEN) seeks to aid in the organization of arts advocacy efforts in the state. 

In a workshop led by facilitators, Jeff Poulin, arts education program manager at Americans for the Arts (AFTA); Lynn Tuttle, director of content and policy at National Association for Music Education (NAfME); and Mary Luehrsen, director of public affairs and government relations at NAMM, the network met with the intent to insure that every Indiana student has reliable access to a well-rounded education that includes music and the arts and to discuss the long-term vision for music and arts education as mandated by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The group developed a set of objectives that focused on unifying arts leaders, educators and advocates and in maintaining an effective state-level music and arts education advocacy organization that offers training and information to serve a statewide advocacy plan aimed at engaging lawmakers, officials and stakeholders at the local and state levels of government.  

Members of the group will continue advocacy work by meeting with Indiana Department of Education representatives at a series of town halls and meetings. As part of its vision for arts education, representatives from the group will request that the state strengthens and expands policies to assure access to music and arts education, and that music and arts education be included as part of its state accountability formulas and systems being developed to meet the ESSA requirements.  Along with this, the group will emphasize the role of music and arts education in meeting school goals for parent and family engagement, and encourage expansion of programs to engage parents and families.


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