Arts Education Branch Promotes Cultural Understanding Through the Arts

LOS ANGELES (Feb. 5, 2018) — The Division of Instruction’s Arts Education Branch is working in conjunction with the Division of Access, Equity, and Acceleration to highlight the culture of L.A. Unified’s African-American/Black students by providing greater cultural understanding through the arts. This initiative was established to better address the academic and social emotional needs of African-American/Black students that are not met through pedagogical practices. Its aim is to validate and affirm the home culture and language of African-American/Black students by honoring them and their families as valued stakeholders within L.A. Unified.

During the month of February, which is also recognized as Black History Month, arts programming including dance, theater, music, film, visual arts, and media will take place through every Local District to recognize and celebrate this valued culture. Organizations to provide programming include the Museum of African-American Art, the African-American Chamber Music Society Orchestra, Impact African Dance and Drum ensemble, the International Association of Black Dancers, among others.

Programming includes film screenings, forums, as well as performances that celebrate student expression through the arts including dance and theatre. Nearly 600 LA Unified schools from all districts will be participating in this rich programming including Lincoln High School, Fremont High School, Van Nuys High School, ArTES, and many more. The month concludes with a special outside celebration on February 27 at central headquarters on Beaudry Avenue from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. where student and professional performances, food trucks, and community leaders will all be a part of the festivities.

“Given the ethnic and cultural diversity of students in our District, it is imperative that we celebrate all cultures,” explained Rory Pullens, Senior Executive Director of the Arts. “We are proud of the achievements and contributions African-Americans have made in the past, but we expect no less success of our students today. Highlighting culture through the arts is arts integration at its finest.”

The Arts Education Branch is dedicated to honoring the history, achievements, and journey of the African-American community. The Arts Education Branch is dedicated to honoring the history, achievements, and journey of the African-American community. Teachers are welcome to construct lessons around these important topics. To learn more about the Arts Education Branch, its mission and initiatives, please visit https://arts.lausd.net.

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