Arts programs have long suffered cuts as schools adjust to meeting the growing demands of academic performance and standardized tests. Students are rarely tested on the arts, and arts knowledge is challenging to measure, so it becomes an easy target when schools are pressed for money and results. So how does one justify arts spending when test scores are at stake?
Ascend Learning charter schools is betting on the arts to tap into the benefits of arts in learning, according to The Hechinger Report. Students are surrounded by art and the schools replicate a museum-like environment. While the demands of academic performance has had its role in cuts to the arts, educators are hoping that Common Core standards will bring back attention to the importance of the arts, as Sara Neufeld reports for The Hechinger Report:
"The arts most often get short shrift in high-poverty schools under intense pressure to boost academic performance. But the Common Core standards mention the arts frequently: approximately 75 times, according to Sandra Ruppert, director of the nonprofit Arts Education Partnership. Students are expected to analyze paintings, music and theater and create their own works of art. 'The pendulum might be swinging to the idea that maybe kids actually do need a well-balanced education,' Ruppert said."