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Working Together

A Case Study of a National Arts Education Partnership


Bernard W. Andrews

Partnerships among a variety of institutions – for profit, not-for-profit, and non-profit – are a relatively recent organizational development. Such partnerships link businesses, government, and social agencies. The primary reason for these relationships is to achieve goals sooner and more efficiently by building on the resources and expertise of each partner. In arts education, schools, arts organizations, cultural institutions, government agencies, and universities have engaged in joint ventures to improve the teaching and learning of the arts disciplines in their schools and in their communities. These partnerships have been particularly beneficial for teachers, many of whom have limited background in the arts but are expected to teach them in their classrooms. Arts partnerships initially focused on the goals of the participating organizations; that is, to develop artistic skills, to build future audiences, and/or to encourage young people to consider an artistic career. More recently, partnerships focus on educational goals rather than solely artistic ones. Despite the challenges and complexities of arts education partnerships, most partners believe that the benefits to students, teachers and the community outweigh the disadvantages and consequently, as the research in Working Together demonstrates, they are willing to justify the time, energy, and expense involved to improve the quality of arts education.


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Chapter 7. Replication


· 7 · replication The purpose of the questions on participants’ personal learning and recom- mendations was intended to determine parameters for transferring the projects to other sites in the following years of the program. Essentially, the intention was to ensure that new partner organizations would not reinvent the wheel in developing arts projects in their jurisdictions, both for the individuals involved or implementation of the projects. Personal Learning Artists, teachers, and project coordinators provided differentiated responses in accounting for their personal learning through their involvement in the project (refer to appendix 5, pp. 130–132). This is to be expected given that each group of them functioned in a different role within the ArtsSmarts pro- gram. Moreover, the artists were functioning outside their normal venues; that is, they were operating within the school culture rather than within stu- dios and concert halls. 60 a case study of a national arts education partnership Artist Learning The artists recognized that they were in a world very different than their own. They indicated that they learned that school time is highly structured, and to teach effectively, they had to master a lesson’s time slot. Artist I now have a better sense of time. I would work with the teachers to use time more effectively. Nerene Ives and Lesley Wolf They learned that classes of students are not homogeneous entities; that is, students learn in different ways, and effective instruction requires adapting to students’ needs. Artist We learned about different learning styles … learning how to...

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