February 2021 Arts Initiative Newsletter

February is African American History Month.  The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum join in paying tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve full citizenship in American society. Read more HERE.


California County Superintendents Educational Services Association


Inside this Issue

  • CCSESA Statewide Arts Initiative News
  • County Programs
  • State and National Highlights
  • Professional Learning Opportunities



Take Action Now! Survey for Educators and Administrators

CCSESA Arts Initiative in collaboration with the California Department of Education and The California Arts Project would like your feedback about how we can provide professional learning for arts educators focused on the new California Arts Education Framework for Public Schools, Transitional Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve. While the pandemic prevented the successful rollout of the Arts Education Framework in face-to-face sessions across the state, we would like to create a new plan with the feedback from educators across California.  In this effort, we would like your feedback to think about new and future approaches that may include virtual delivery of professional learning. We recognize that we need to design a rollout process that is appropriate for our current landscape with heightened health and safety considerations. 

Please take about 7-9 minutes to share your thoughts about arts education professional learning.  Your feedback will directly inform our future professional learning opportunities related to the new Arts Education Framework.  

Survey link for Educators
Survey link for Administrators

Please share this request with other California arts educators and administrators.  We want to hear from educators and administrators from across the state. Please know that we are sending this out through multiple channels in. We apologize in advance if you receive more than one notice regarding our survey effort. 

Questions?  Please contact Sarah Anderberg at sanderberg@ccsesa.org or Patti Saraniero at patti@moxieresearch.com.

The Art of Everything Leadership Conversations A five-part Series


On January 15, 2021, CCSESA Arts Initiative partnered with CREATE CA to launch the first session in a series of five, focused on the book written by Dr. Gary Waddell, The Art of Everything Leading for “WE” in the Age of “ME.

Join us on February 19th at 9:30 a.m. to participate in the second session of this interactive series focused on key elements of leadership. We encourage you to invite leaders to join us in this important opportunity. Course credit will be available through CSU San Marcos.

Please contact Jessie Mapes at jmapes@ccsesa.org to register.


Make Plans Now for March as Arts Education Month

March is an opportunity to spotlight the importance of arts education.  Many communities across California are spotlighting the importance of the dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts education for all students.  As we celebrate the benefits and value the arts bring to our schools and communities, we want to ensure that all students have access to quality arts learning in their schools. Make plans now to find ways to communicate about the benefits of arts learning and highlight student learning in the arts. 

Scroll Down to find a special toolkit developed by CREATE CA and gain new ideas for how you can get involved.


CCSESA Rural Arts Network (CRAN)

In January, the CCSESA Rural Arts Network (CRAN) meeting spotlighted guest speakers: Sofia Fojas (Santa Clara County Office of Education) and Emiliano Valdez (Monterey County Office of Education) who facilitated a rich conversation focused on the CCSESA Creativity at the Core Module 5: A.C.T.O.S. Arts integration: Culturally Responsive Arts Learning Across the Curriculum Tied to Common Core (Grades K-8). Participants learned a methodology showcased in the module (A.C.T.O.S.) as well as a wonderful “place making” activity.

Building on the success of the 2019-20 Rural County Arts Cohort, we have been working to expand access by creating the CCSESA Rural Arts Network. If you haven’t already, please join us to learn, share your voice, and expand the field’s understanding of the specific strengths and challenges of our rural areas as we continue to work to offer equitable, accessible arts education for students across the state. We invite you to attend our next meeting on February 23 from 8:30 to 10:00 a.m.

Click HERE to read the initial announcement regarding the CCSESA Rural Arts Network.


Upcoming Meeting Dates:
Feb 23, 2021 * Mar 23, 2021 * Apr 27, 2021


Music that Unifies: Developing Empathy and Understanding Through World Music (CCSESA’s Creativity at the Core Module 19)

Music that Unifies: Developing Empathy and understanding Through World Music
Join us on March 8 and 13 for this pair of interactive sessions designed to utilize the power of music to broaden a student’s world view and develop a greater sense of empathy. The sessions will reinforce both the need for discipline specific music and arts instruction as well as integrated instruction to benefit the whole child. We will explore the lives of people in other parts of the world by introducing students to the music that is part of their daily lives, rituals, and celebrations, while also introducing and reinforcing key music standards.

Click HERE to learn about the module.

This series will pair a short 20-minute session one week with a more in-depth hour-long discussion the following week. Materials and resources have been adapted for virtual, hybrid, and in-person learning. For questions or more information, contact Aaron Bryan (abryan@fcoe.org) or Pauline Crooks (pauline.crooks@sdcoe.net). 


CCSESA Creativity at the Core Modules

CCSESA is pleased to announce the launch of Creativity at the Core Module 22: California Arts Standards for Public Schools: Resources for Learning & Implementation developed by San Diego County Office of Education and Santa Clara County Office of Education. This Module provides educators with an overall understanding of the California Arts Standards structure and purpose as well as the opportunity to study one or more arts disciplines. Hats off to Pauline Crooks (San Diego), Sofia Fojas (Santa Clara) and Jeannine Flores (Los Angeles).

Counties on the Move Spotlight in Region 8 – Explore Arts Programs in Central California County Offices of Education

The CCSESA Statewide Arts Initiative believes that the arts are an integral part of a comprehensive curriculum and are essential for learning in the 21st century. All California students – from every culture, geographic region and socio-economic level – deserve quality arts learning in dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts as part of the core curriculum. In this issue, we would like to highlight the excellent work being done on behalf of students primarily in northern California.

CLICK HERE to view/download the entire Counties on the Move: Arts Education for All Students publication.

Learn about arts programs in REGION 8:
Kern, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties here.

Meet the Region 8 Arts Leads, who work to strengthen arts learning for all students. Anthony Goss (Kern); Brent Moser (San Luis Obispo); Kathy Koury (Santa Barbara); and Anna Belitski (Ventura).

Regional Arts Lead: Anna Belitski, Ventura County Office of Education

CCSESA Regional and County Arts Leads

To view and/or download a complete list of Regional and County Arts Leads – CLICK HERE

Teacher as Curator – New Book Release

Teacher as Curator
Sarah Anderberg (CCSESA) and Dr. Lisa Donovan (Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts) were pleased that their recent book Teacher as Curator was released by Teachers College Press. The book provides a roadmap for using creative strategies to engage both educators and students in the learning process. Focusing on key qualities of culturally and linguistically responsive arts learning, chapters specifically demonstrate how arts integration strategies and formative assessment can be a catalyst for change in the classroom. Readers will be inspired by teachers and practitioners who have donned the role of curator to achieve significant results. Kindergarten–college educators will find research-based protocols and practices that they can translate into any educational setting. In digestible chapters, this resource provides a theoretical base for building artistic literacy into the curriculum and for developing multimodal opportunities for students to demon­strate their understanding of content.

Book LaunchFebruary 26, 2021

Arts Ed Twitter Chat – #CaArtsEdChat

Join @PCrooks_VAPA, @VAPAJeannine, @aaronbryan, and other arts education leaders from across the state for the #CaArtsEdChat, a Twitter Chat held every Wednesday from 4:00 to 4:30 p.m. We’re growing a statewide virtual professional learning community for educators, artists, and others passionate about arts education. Join us as we discuss topics such as: the newly adopted CA Arts Framework; integrating the arts and technology; arts and anti-racism; and much more!

New to Twitter, or just want to learn more about the Twitter Chat or see the questions in advance? Visit www.bit.ly/CaArtsEdChat2020.

County Programs


Alameda County Office of Education – Virtual Webinars

The Arts, Anti-Racism, & Climate Change
March 18, 2021
In these unprecedented and challenging times, the arts bring inquiry, voice, and creativity to support the processing and understanding the complex issues our communities are facing. This webinar, a collaboration among six counties in the Bay Area, offers creative and critical strategies using the arts to support teaching and learning.


Promising Practices from the Field
April 22, 2021
Educators in Alameda County are using the arts in ways that help students express the context of their lives, learn content in deeply engaging ways, and build the creativity needed to address the inequities in our communities and world. Join us for inspired presentations by educators in alameda County, as they share the critical ways the arts have an impact on the lives of their students.


Humboldt County Office of Education – Creative Education Symposium: Connecting the Arts to Social-Emotional Learning

Humboldt County is providing the professional development to region 1 teachers, teaching artists, coordinators and administrators for the Arts & Creativity Initiative. More than 100 educators will participate in 6 hours of training in January. Humboldt is also preparing the Regional Arts Forum: Creative Education Symposium- Connecting the Arts to SEL.

Keynote speakers are: Ping Ho, Jonathan Juravich, and Stuart Stotts. This virtual symposium will include breakout sessions to strengthen empathy and resilience in schools.

April 3, 2021

Merced County Office of Education – Launches new Strategic Arts Plan

Welcome to Arts @ MCOE!
The Merced County Office of Education is pleased to share its new strategic arts plan! Our initiative was established with the following vision and values:

“Merced County Office of Education envisions a countywide effort that ensures all youth have access to high-quality arts education and experiences, all teachers have resources and support to engage their classrooms and clubs in arts activities, and all advocates and community members have the space and opportunity to celebrate and engage with public art.”

Read the Merced County Strategic Arts Plan HERE
View the Strategic Arts Plan Launch Video HERE

If you would like to learn more, contact Noelle Chandler, Arts Education Consultant at nchandler@mcoe.org.

Riverside County Office of Education – Artistry In Action

Please join us for a panel discussion and question and answer session with three college level teachers and conductors.  Dr. Gregory Whitmore, Dr. Rickey Badua and Dr. Jake Sustaita will join us to share their thoughts on how young musicians can make the most of their music education as they strive to improve and move towards higher education or professional practice. 

For more information, contact Louisa Higgins, Administrator, Visual and Performing Arts at lhiggins@rcoe.us.



San Diego County Office of Education – Arts Empower Mega Rally

Arts Empower Mega Rally Encore: Student Spotlight
The October 2020 Arts Empower Mega Rally was such a success that we are presenting an encore!  Please join us on Thursday, March 11, 2021 for the Arts Empower Mega Rally Encore: Student Spotlight. Be inspired by a student panel as well as beautiful and powerful artwork created by our students to help them cope, connect, and communicate during the COVID-19 pandemic. Register now to attend the Arts Empower San Diego Rally Encore: Student Spotlight. We can’t wait to celebrate arts education and our San Diego County students with you at the Arts Empower Rally Encore.


Santa Clara County Office of Education – Two Communities of Practice

Through the Artspiration Community of Practice, we will engage with each other around specific topics impacting our lives to improve teaching and learning in a virtual world.

FEBRUARY 24; MARCH 17; APRIL 14; MAY 26; and JUNE 9
Topics include: ways to include new CA Arts Standards and Framework; social-emotional learning and the arts; unpacking racism through the arts; arts and the Black Lives Movement; and indigenous ways of knowledge and learning. We see the arts as a tool for healing, connecting to self and community, increasing student engagement, and nurturing creativity.
4:00-5:30 p.m.

The arts are essential!




The California Arts Project (TCAP) – New Website

The California Arts Project launched in January a new website, www.tcap.net!

The website provides current information on TCAP’s open professional learning opportunities, contact information, and resources. Check back often as the website continues to be updated and grow.

TCAP’s Upcoming Arts Education From a Distance Professional Learning Programs
Until conditions change, all of TCAP’s professional learning programs, district-based programs,  and statewide programs are being offered through online platforms. TCAP’s From a Distance programs provide support for teachers in teaching the arts in hybrid, face-to-face, or in distance learning formats, arts education professional learning communities,  and to schools and districts improving or expanding their arts programs. The programs may bridge to face-to-face professional learning when conditions allow. Please visit www.tcap.net or email reach.tcap@gmail.com for more information on any of TCAP’s programs or services.

For more information on TCAP’s programs or services please email reach.tcap@gmail.com.

Click HERE to read about the many offerings of TCAP

California Department of Education

Exemplary Arts Application for grades 7-12 is now live: https://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/sr/ea/

This program recognizes some of California’s exemplary schools for excellence in Arts Education. Schools selected for the Exemplary Arts Education Award demonstrate broad-based achievement in Arts instruction and for advancing the Arts for all students. 

The California Department of Education Exemplary Arts Awards were just announced for grades 7-12 and here is the link: https://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/sr/ea/


California State Summer School for the Arts (CCSSA)

California State Summer School for the Arts (CSSSA)
For teens who love to create, the California State Summer School for the Arts (CSSSA) Summer Animation Program application is now live for Summer 2021! The Animation Program provides students with a unique opportunity to experience a broad range of possibilities within the world of animation. From fine art to digital animation, this program encourages students to explore their potentials, and bring movement to their artwork through an intense and rigorous curriculum. CSSSA is committed to running a robust program this summer, either in-person or virtual, as State and LA County restrictions allow.
Click HERE to visit the CSSSA website, view the application instructions, and apply online today.

KQED Youth Media Challenges

Get your students podcasting, creating videos, or designing solutions to real-world problems during second semester with KQED’s Youth Media Challenges. Each YMC includes curriculum resources to support self-directed learning while allowing for student choice and content alignment. This is a challenge, not a contest, aligned to CTE anchor standards. Be ready for the launch of our student showcase site this spring where every participating student can share their voice.

Click on the image to view the video!

Click HERE to learn more, preview curriculum, and sign up.

California Alliance for Arts Education

The Student Voices Campaign is an annual statewide creative arts competition for young people to make their voices heard in their school district. Students in grades 7-12 create short original art pieces that show why the arts matter.

Submit to the Student Voices Campaign by March 1 for an opportunity at up to $500 in cash, @Adobe software, and change in your community! We’re proud of the continued support of @Adobe and we can’t wait to honor outstanding submissions at our event on April 16! Submit now at studentvoicescampaign.org!

Did you know that participating in the Student voices campaign can earn you a California State Seal of Civic Engagement? CA students who demonstrate excellence in civics education and participation, can be awarded the seal on their diploma. To learn more, visit studentvoicescampaign.org!

The Student Voices Campaign is offering a new resource to speak to how the arts can help create a more just and equitable future. the Sustainable Development goals can center submissions on the quality education that all students deserve. To learn more visit studentvoicescampaign.org!

CABE 2021 Virtual Annual Conference

March 23-27, 2021
Daily High Profiles Keynote and Featured Speakers;
Interactive Virtual Exhibit Market Place Hall;
Virtual Parent Resource Center;
Distance and Hybrid Learning Tools Workshops and Institutes;
English Language Development Designated and Integrated ELD;
STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Mathematics;
LCAP Processes and Decisions to Address EL Roadmap and Global CA 2030;
Dual Language Immersion – Elementary & Secondary;
Administrator and School Board Leadership;
Parent and Family Engagement & Leadership;
Safe Haven Schools & Districts and Immigration Resources;
Assessment and Accountability — the California Data Dashboard, LCAP and the California Spanish Assessment & Much More!

REGISTER HERERegistration closes March 14!

2021 California Student Media Festival

Now in its 55th year, the California Student Media Festival (CSMF) is our nation’s oldest student media festival. Over the past twenty-five years, the California Student Media Festival has awarded more than $145,000 to California Schools. It has expanded to include the work of more than 6,000 student contestants from schools across the state. The Festival exists to celebrate the amazing media and multimedia projects produced by California’s students and teachers — rewarding and acknowledging their successful classroom work at an awards event in June every year.

May 22, 2021 2:00-4:00 p.m. CSMF WEBSITE


California Music Educators Association’s PSA – Join a Performing Arts Class

Are you concerned that 2020 has impacted your child’s social and emotional wellbeing? Participating in a Performing Arts class in school could be the answer you’re looking for!

Encouraging your child to participate in a Performing Arts class can really help the feeling of isolation during these days of distance/remote learning. These are classes like Band, Orchestra, Choir, Dance, and Theatre. They’ll make new friends, develop confidence and feel the satisfaction belonging to a caring/supportive community when we return to in-person instruction.

Click here to listen to the PSA message and join a Performing Arts class today!

CREATE CA – March as Arts Education Month Social Media Toolkit

March as Arts Education Month Social Media Toolkit

This Arts Education Month,  we invite you to join forces with Create CA to show how #ArtsEdRebuilds. From building leaders to reviving our economy, arts education is and will continue to be more essential than ever. Starting February 22nd use the sample posts in our social media toolkit at  http://bit.ly/ArtsEdRebuilds to promote and  recognize the importance of a full and relevant arts education! Join the conversation using the hashtag #ArtsEdRebuilds.

California Alliance for Arts Education & Create CA Merger Partner Announcement

We are thrilled to see our friends and partners at California Alliance for Arts Education (the Alliance) and Create CA seizing an opportunity to become stronger in the fight for every student’s right to receive an arts education by merging their organizations. This merger builds on a longstanding partnership and unites them in their shared mission to make sure that a quality arts education is part of every student’s life.

Operating together under the Create CA name, they will combine the power of Create CA’s dynamic communications and innovative data project with the Alliance’s proven policy and advocacy track record and statewide network supporting districts and counties to provide a full arts education to all students. They recognize that students who are low income and of color face the greatest barriers to a full and relevant arts education. Collectively, they will continue to fight for students to get what they need and deserve, because ultimately they know this is an equity issue. 

By coming together, they’ll go farther faster in insisting that arts education is a student right. With the stakes higher than ever, we’re so excited about what they will do together.

Americans for the Arts – National Arts Action Summit

Join Americans for the Arts, organizational partners, and hundreds of advocates April 5-9, 2021 for the National Arts Action Summit. Over these five days, advocates will gain a depth of knowledge from policy experts at Americans for the Arts and many organizational Partners in an all-virtual setting.
To learn more about the Arts Action Summit and scholarship information, click HERE.

Arts Workers in California Report Release

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation released a report on the need to reimagine employment policies for artists and gig workers. With over 600,000 arts workers in California, we have an opportunity to create a future where all workers have access to basic benefits and protections. Learn more HERE.

National Endowment for the Arts

There is no aspect of American life that hasn’t been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including the arts. In this issue of American Artscape, we’ll look at the heartbreak and the silver linings of the pandemic, from how arts organizations across the country are faring, to how reopening plans are proceeding, to how the National Endowment for the Arts and our partners have worked together to strengthen the sector during this crisis. 

Professional Leaning Opportunities


UPDATE – Please note that events listed below are currently open for registration and that event organizers continue to monitor current federal and state health guidelines.


February 24, 2021
Presented by the Santa Clara County Office of Education

MARCH 2021

March 4, 2021
3:00-5:00 pm
Media Arts for Elementary Classrooms – Session 5 STORYTELLING
Presented by the Los Angeles County Office of Education

March 8, 2021 DAY 1
3:40-4:00 pm
March 15, 2021 DAY 2
3:30 -4:30 pm
Music that Unifies: Developing Empathy and Understanding Through World Music
Co-presented by the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools and San Diego County Office of Education

March 11, 2021
4:00 -5:00 pm
Arts Empower Rally Encore: Student Spotlight
Presented by the San Diego County Office of Education, Arts Empower, CAEA-SDC, CMEA-SBS, SDTEA, SouthCAP

March 17, 2021
Presented by the Santa Clara County Office of Education

March 18, 2021
The Arts, Anti-Racism & Climate Change: Strategies from the Bay Area Virtual Webinar
Presented by the Alameda County Office of Education

March 23-27, 2021
CABE 2021 Virtual Annual Conference
Presented by the California Association for Bilingual Education

March 25, 2021
3:00-5:00 pm
Media Arts for Elementary Classrooms – Session 6 CELEBRATION
Presented by the Los Angeles County Office of Education

APRIL 2021

April 3, 2021
9:00-3:00 pm
Creative Education Symposium 2021
Presented by the Humboldt County Office of Education

April 10, 2021
12:30-2:00 pm
Artistry in Action
Presented by the Riverside County Office of Education

April 14, 2021
Presented by the Santa Clara County Office of Education

April 22, 2021
Promising Practices from the Field Virtual Webinar
Presented by the Alameda County Office of Education

MAY 2021

May 22, 2021
2:00-4:00 pm
California Student Media Festival (CSMF)
FREE to Enter and FREE to Attend
Entry Window: January 31-May 7, 2021

May 26, 2021
Presented by the Santa Clara County Office of Education

JUNE 2021

June 9, 2021
Presented by the Santa Clara County Office of Education

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