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money for art/joyce's good advice

updated sun 5 aug 01


Marcia Selsor on sat 4 aug 01

Joyce lays out very common scenarios which I think administrators thrive
on. In Montana I saw years of budget cutting (actually decades). Deans
intentionally pit music, theater and art against one another. Arts and
Sciences against Business. Happened all the time. She is wise in her
advice. Be proactive.
Marcia in Montana where a middle school's budget for Art is $200.year
and the reservation Catholic mission school where one of my former
students just got hired has a budget for the elementary program of
$3300/year and doesn't include any capital. She is amazed and delighted.
Marcia in Montana

Joyce Lee wrote:
> It is my experience that too many fine arts supporters battle with one another for the same dollars...... ASK for MORE DOLLARS ... that's the key.'s
> your kids' education .... find out how your district can gain more financing.... find out about writing grants etc. Visit districts who DO have well funded art programs; meet with the teachers or parent organizations of those districts to discover their secrets.... how did they manage what your district cannot...... get the DETAILS.... And, yes, you'll need to go through "administration" in order to visit ..... don't operate from a clandestine atmosphere... approach the superintendent .... we're talking about PUBLIC schools here... it's your right to visit .... as long as you go through whatever system is in place for visitors.
> Ask what you can do to help increase the money for next year's budget.... We needed some major renewal work on our performing arts building .... roof, stage, lighting etc etc. It wasn't fair that the drama teacher had to do all the leg work, but she cared enough to find out what was needed and then worked with the district in achieving those needs. EVERYTHING on her list was eventually
> accomplished!! Although, of course, by that time she had a new list. Good for her! And good for her students...... OUR students.
> Start today promoting individuals for your next school board election who will be favorable to your cause. Nothing wrong with that. That's the way the process works.....
> Some few seem to relish the fight more than winning the battle .... but if that isn't the case with you, research-research-research and THEN work for improvement. It's YOUR school district ... just because your kids have reached teenagerdom doesn't mean that they don't need you personally to work with the schools...... the needs are simply different ...... Room Mothers may not be a necessity, anymore ..... but teaching your kids how to work with the system and emerging from a gentle fray with what one needs could be significantly important to their present and future.
> Being teenagers, they generally already have Bitching down to a science (OR up to an art form)... teach them the next steps.
> Enough soapboxing.....
> Joyce
> In the Mojave
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Marcia Selsor