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Jason Rapp

SCAC opens three arts ed grants

Funding available for districts, teachers, and projects


The South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) is starting 2021 by giving the state’s arts educators three grants to advance arts ed initiatives in their schools.

The grants are available to directly support teachers who need help to acquire supplies, materials, or professional development; school districts as they implement or further standards-based arts curricula; and several groups seeking to use the arts to advance learning in children. That’s a lot to unpack, but The Hub is here to guide readers through the weeds. (It’s what we do.) Let’s get started.

Arts Teacher Support Grants

This time last year, you might remember the SCAC taking applications for SAM grants: School Art Materials grants. They were a first for the agency… a wildly popular first. But they were one-time grants supported by one-time funds. Not any longer. The SCAC allocated funds to Arts Teacher Support grants for FY21, a new recurring category that combines the SAM grants with elements of the erstwhile Teacher Standards Implementation grant category. Arts Teacher Support grants give teachers the same access to one-time funding for supplies, materials, and equipment but broadens to include professional development, the latter as valuable as any of the former. Grants up to $1,200 are available for projects occurring by May 15, 2021. A matching requirement might apply. Rolling applications are open now! Get details from the Arts Teacher Support grant guidelines here. (Don’t be confused about recurring vs. one-time funding. These grants recur annually now and can be applied for and received up to twice in a fiscal year for different purchases/projects and applied for and received up to twice in subsequent years… for different purchases/projects.)

District Arts Support Grants

Is your South Carolina public school district committed to implementing standards-based arts curricula or making the arts an integral part of its basic curriculum and daily classroom instruction? If it is, it can get up to $25,000 per year to do it starting in FY22. The Hub won’t spend as much time here because this category, while worthy of awareness, is narrowly focused and applies to far fewer than the other two grants in this post. The deadline for districts to apply for this rigorous grant is March 5, 2021. Advisement from the SCAC is strongly suggested. Get further information on District Arts Support Grants here.

Arts Education Project Grants

Arts Education Project grants fund projects and programs that use the arts to meet the educational, developmental, and social needs of K-12 students in both traditional arts education settings and through other organizations that utilize the arts to advance learning in students. Schools, districts, arts and non-arts nonprofits, colleges and universities, and governmental organizations are eligible for these grants. Use them to help underwrite things like:
  • Workshops
  • Camps
  • Artist residencies
  • Public art projects
  • Performances
  • Exhibitions
  • Acquisition of critical equipment or supplies
  • Program planning
  • Professional development for instructors, artists and/or administrators
Help underwrite? Yes. Recipients will need to match the funding 1:1. Up to $15,000 is available, and applications are open now. The deadline is also March 5, 2021. Get the details on Art Education Project grants here.
Whether you are ready for advisement or simply have questions about these grants, please contact Specialist for Arts Organizations & Education Catherine Ntube (803.734.8694 | cntube@arts.sc.gov).

Jason Rapp

Looking for an arts ed job?

Help out Engaging Creative Minds remotely

Apply soon! Target start date: Monday, February 15, 2021
Ed. note: The Hub would love to help someone start the new year with a new gig. Frequent SCAC partner in the Lowcountry Engaging Creative Minds is looking for a full-time administrative assistant who can—get this—work remotely during and after the pandemic. Posting below is provided by Engaging Creative Minds and does not in any way suggest involvement with or by the South Carolina Arts Commission, which is simply sharing information. It is edited for style.
Engaging Creative Minds (ECM) seeks an administrative assistant with a creative background to successfully support programs and operations. This is a salaried, full-time remote position. Only those with the qualifications listed below should apply. NOTE: This position will continue remotely even after the pandemic. Duties and responsibilities are for primary support of ECM’s systems & operations coordinator for all virtual and in-person program delivery:
  • Communicating with ECM instructors, teachers, seasonal staff and coaches
  • Comparing and reporting pricing for program supplies and materials
  • Managing volunteers, as needed, to assemble program kits & work at Charleston Marathon
  • Scheduling & organizing meetings for coaches, staff and board, when necessary
  • Packing and delivering program materials and supplies
  • Scheduling , filming (on ECM iPhone) & uploading to Vimeo ECM's virtual programs
  • Entering invoices bi-weekly into bill.com
  • Various other office assistance, as necessary
Qualifications of the Ideal Candidate Include:
  • Knowledge and experience working in Vimeo, Excel, Word, Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Zoom
  • Knowledge and experience working in bill.com
  • Excellent communication skills (perfectionist in grammar and spelling a plus)
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Experience with social media not required, but a plus
  • Ability to shop for best pricing on program materials and organize multiple orders
  • Must be a self-directed, self-motivated go-getter who can take the initiative to get things DONE!
  • A passion for serving youth through the arts is a plus.
  • Ability to work in-person when necessary to film scheduled ECM instructor programs during virtual learning
If you have these qualifications and want to work with a dynamic team of passionate arts educators and creative minds, please submit résumé and letter of interest telling us why you are the ideal candidate for this position to ECM Executive Director Robin Berlinsky:
  • email your information to robin@engagingcreativeminds.org
  • OR mail to:
    • Robin Berlinsky Executive Director Engaging Creative Minds PO Box 31875 Charleston, SC 29417
Target Start Date: Monday, February 15, 2021 ECM is an equal opportunity employer. Mission and purpose Engaging Creative Minds (ECM) mission is to spark creativity and curiosity in all learners through innovative learning experiences. ECM is an Arts Integration educational nonprofit based in Charleston. We work with school districts, principals, teachers and the local workforce to identify specific knowledge and skill sets all students should master before graduating high school. We hire and train local artists, STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) professionals and cultural organizations, called ECM Instructors, to work with grade level teams of teachers to support learning through the Arts. Our goal is for every student to achieve academically, stay engaged in school and succeed in life while their teachers develop engaging Arts Integration teaching strategies that foster collaboration, critical thinking, communication & creativity. Both teachers and students report that ECM is a powerful model of success.  

Jason Rapp

S.C. Governor’s School for Arts recognized for arts ed research

Link uncovered between drama curriculum and reading success


The Arts Schools Network Board of Directors has awarded the Research Initiative-Institution Award to the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities.

The award honors an organization for its commitment to ongoing research and the dissemination of knowledge in research in arts education. The Governor's School's research initiative, implemented by the Office of Outreach in partnership with the South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) and University of South Carolina Department of Theatre and Dance, examines the potential impact that drama curriculum has on reading motivation and success for young children. Melissa Brookes, managing director for ASN, said, “Each year the Arts Schools Network board of directors take great pride in honoring and recognizing schools and individuals for their extraordinary efforts and impact throughout arts education. This year, we are thrilled to recognize the Governor’s School as the winner of our Research Initiative Award.” In the Spark! outreach program that this research is based on, at-risk third-grade readers attending the state mandated Read-To-Succeed summer program are exposed to drama principles in addition to their reading requirements. Now in its third year, Spark! participants are showing increased gains in creativity measures like fluency and originality, along with critical reading measures required by MAP testing, when compared to similar students not exposed to the drama component. “While we are only three years into this five-year initiative, the combination of creativity gains and reading gains together are what draws us further into this research, and we’re very excited to see these promising trends,” said Carol Baker, outreach director at the Governor’s School. “We’re grateful for this acknowledgement from the Arts Schools Network and for the ongoing support and participation of our partners, the South Carolina Arts Commission, who is funding this project, and the USC Department of Theatre and Dance, who is compiling and analyzing the data.”

About the Research

Dr. Peter Duffy, who heads the Master of Arts in Teaching program in theatre education at the University of South Carolina is leading this research which combines the qualitative measures of theatre making and creativity with quantitative methods of reading and motivation. “This research matters because it examines how story, motivation, and embodied learning through drama can impact a child’s desire to read, and how this component can affect the way young readers interact with their reading materials,” said Duffy. “We are studying how more creative teaching methods can motivate readers to really know the story inside and out. “Our research suggests that students who engage in the drama work make small but important improvements in their overall reading scores. Gathering five years of data will help us see whether these trends hold overtime, giving us a stronger impression of the real impact these programs can make.” The Spark! program was initiated at Kenneth Gardner Elementary in Williamsburg County School District, and thanks to two years of early positive findings, received increased funding to expand to Hardeeville Elementary in Jasper County School District. Both districts serve high poverty, rural, under-resourced populations and neither has a certified drama teacher at any level. Each school offers a multi-week summer remedial reading camp for rising fourth-grade students at risk of retention due to low test scores. The summer camp is part of the Read-to-Succeed program and is the last possible opportunity for these young students to increase their scores enough to move on to the next grade. How this research impacts arts education funding priorities “The Spark! outreach program’s research into the relationship between drama and reading in young, at-risk readers, provides compelling evidence of the correlation between creativity and reading retention,” said David Platts, executive director of the SCAC. “Working with Dr. Duffy and his team at the University of South Carolina and the SC Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities has demonstrated how these types of programs, while specifically designed to help students, also provide vital information for agencies such as ours as we analyze and prioritize our programming decisions. Good decisions and responsible stewardship of public funds are possible only with the availability of solid and meaningful research and data.” Getting students back on track “Ultimately, this is about improving reading skills and reading motivation of young students in South Carolina,” said Dr. Cedric Adderley, Governor’s School president. “We know that early reading comprehension is the key to success, and in this day and time, when we’re seeing reading regression in elementary school students due to pandemic-imposed virtual learning, we hope that programs like Spark! will be part of the solution to getting these students back on track.” “At the Governor’s School, we see first-hand how incorporating the arts into education can help improve student engagement, academic success, motivation, and hope for the future,” continued Adderley. “Now our challenge, as an arts resource and research center for teachers and students throughout the state, is to expand these proven programs to impact more students in need.”

About SC Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities

Located in Greenville, the South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities cultivates young artists from across the state through pre-professional training in the areas of creative writing, dance, drama, music and visual arts. In the public, residential high school, students refine their talents in an arts-centered community while receiving a nationally recognized academic education. Summer programs are available to rising 7th-12th grade students. The Governor’s School serves as a resource to all teachers and students in South Carolina, offering comprehensive outreach programs designed to bring together artists, educators, community organizations and schools. SCGSAH.org

About the Arts Schools Network

Dedicated to excellence and leadership in arts education, Arts Schools Network, a non-profit association founded in 1981, provides arts school leaders, innovative partners and members of arts education institutions with quality resources, support and networking opportunities. Visit www.artsschoolsnetwork.org to learn more.
Image by Amberrose Nelson from Pixabay

Jason Rapp

Applications open at S.C. Governor’s School for the Arts & Humanities

Young artists invited to apply


Artistically talented students in grades 6-11 can now apply to the S.C. Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities’ summer programs and tuition-free, residential high school for the 2021-2022 school year.

All South Carolina residents are eligible and can apply online at SCGSAH.org. “We want every parent who has an artistic child to know about the transformative opportunities that the Governor’s School offers them,” said Cedric Adderley, school president. “We’re hosting numerous virtual events throughout the fall for families to learn more about our programs and the life-long benefits of our pre-professional training.” The Governor’s School is hosting a continuous series of virtual information sessions each week and a virtual open house, First Look, on Saturday, Nov. 7. They have also teamed up with the S.C. Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics and the new Governor’s School for Agriculture at John de la Howe for several Endless Opportunities events for those who wish to learn about the offerings from all three Governor’s Schools. Located in downtown Greenville, SCGSAH offers pre-professional training in creative writing, dance, drama, music, and visual arts. Students attend from all over the state to learn from established, practicing artists in an environment that provides the resources needed to hone their artistic abilities including specialized arts studios, state-of-the-art performance halls, a world-class library and dedicated rehearsal spaces. Governor’s School graduates attend the nation’s top colleges, universities and conservatories, and many students receive arts and academic scholarships. The Residential High School program has been nationally recognized by U.S. News and World Report, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast and Niche. The Palmetto Gold award-winning high school consistently ranks above state and national averages for SAT and ACT scores and had a 99 percent graduation and college acceptance rate for the 2019-2020 school year. The reviews and rankings site Niche.com ranked the Governor’s School the third “Best College Prep High School” and the fourth “Best Public High School” in South Carolina. “About half of our graduates continue to pursue their arts discipline in college and as a career,” said Adderley. “The other half choose collegiate studies in education, business, medicine, technology and other fields where they are very successful because of the discipline and life skills they learned from their experience at the Governor’s School,” said Adderley. The Governor’s School also offers summer programs that provide younger students the opportunity to immerse themselves in their artistic passion while learning from practicing artists. Interested individuals can learn more about the upcoming admissions events, arts programs, and application process at www.SCGSAH.org.

About SC Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities

Located in Greenville, the South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities cultivates young artists from across the state through pre-professional training in the areas of creative writing, dance, drama, music and visual arts. In the public, residential high school, students refine their talents in an arts-centered community while receiving a nationally recognized academic education. Summer programs are available to rising 7th-12th grade students. The Governor’s School serves as a resource to all teachers and students in South Carolina, offering comprehensive outreach programs designed to bring together artists, educators, community organizations and schools. SCGSAH.org

Jason Rapp

STEAMIFY competition for 4th-8th graders

Registration deadline: Saturday, October 31, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. ET


The South Carolina Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with AARP and Augusta University, is sponsoring a virtual engineering and artistic design-based problem solving competition called STEAMIFY.

Students will tackle real-world problems relevant to their community where they are able to design, build, test a prototype to the solution and pitch their innovation as a team. Using areas of computer science, engineering, visual arts, and spoken word, scenarios are created for students to problem solve and dialogue to use critical thinking skills and their leadership.

“How can you contribute towards making your community livable for all?” 

Scenarios
  • For Computer Science: Students will identify a need in their community that has been impacted by COVID-19. Discuss and create how they would create a mobile or web app that assists, improves, enhances or informs a targeted audience about the availability of services.
  • For Engineering: Students will redesign their classroom to maximize connectivity while social distancing. Students will design and discuss how that would look.
  • For Visual Arts: Students will use their choice of media and design to create one or two pieces of art work that showcases the COVID-19 impact on their life and imagine how their community could apply lessons learned from COVID-19 to become more connected.
  • For Spoken Word: Students are asked to consider the impact of COVID-19 or how the impact of social justice has made on their family and community, lesson learned, and how they propose changing their life and the lives of others in the community. Students will design, create and perform a spoken word piece that chronicles 2020 and how it can lead to positive outcomes and results.
Read more under "Events & Guidelines" on this page.
Who Should Participate

Afterschool programs, schools (public/private), scout clubs, houses of faith, parks and recreation centers, homeschools, and others are invited to participate.

Teams of 2 - 7 students

4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th graders

There is a $10 fee for each event.

For financial support, send your request to steamify@scafterschool.com.


 

Jason Rapp

Arts-forward school district superintendent honored

Green earns Superintendent of the Year title


The South Carolina Arts Commission congratulates Dr. J.R. Green, superintendent of Fairfield County School district, for being named the 2021 South Carolina School Superintendent of the Year by the South Carolina Association of School Administrators.

Dr. J.R. Green headshotHis district is one of seven to receive the new, $18,000 District Arts Grant from the South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC). Within the district are two schools that are Arts in Basic Curriculum Project sites: Fairfield Central High School and Kelly Miller Elementary School. ABC Project sites first apply for the Arts in Basic Curriculum grant from the SCAC. If approved, they receive the grant and acceptance into the program, which is a partnership among the SCAC, South Carolina Dept. of Education, and Winthrop University.

Bonus #content: A list of FY21 grant award recipients is available here.

ALL4SC (website) has more on Green here:

Dr. J.R. Green understands more than most the need to transform education outside of schoolhouse walls. As the superintendent of the Fairfield County School District, Green’s mission is to work with and inspire young people while providing them with an education that forms the foundation of their future.

In recognition of his leadership, the South Carolina Association of School Administrators  recently named Green the 2021 South Carolina School Superintendent of the Year. SCASA gives the award annually to a district superintendent as a component of the National Superintendent of the Year program of the American Association of School Administrators.

William Frick, chair of the Fairfield County School Board, has had the opportunity to observe Green’s leadership as an educator and community builder. “Dr. Green talked about having a ‘culture change’ in the Fairfield County School District,” said Frick. “Our students graduate with two years of college as they graduate from high school, overall test scores are improving, and financially we are operating with a balanced budget.”

ALL4SC is partnering with the Fairfield County School District in a pilot project to begin prototyping a model for the transformation of education in South Carolina and the nation.

“J.R. is the quintessential exemplary school superintendent — leading with his values what matters most for children as well as leading by listening to and learning from others,” notes Barnett Berry, research professor and founding director of ALL4SC at the UofSC.

Green works closely with many education leaders, like ALL4SC, to increase academic and economic opportunity for his students and the overall community. “If we are really being forward thinking, we recognize that in order to change the trajectory of young people’s lives, we have to address more than what happens within the schoolhouse walls,” noted Green when asked about the need to address out-of-school factors in South Carolina. These opportunities are significant in accelerating advancement in his school community, as 90 percent of Fairfield County School District students qualify for free or reduced-price meals.

A product of two parents who instilled the value of education in him, Green spent several years in education administration before becoming FCSD superintendent in 2012. He received his doctorate degree, two master's degrees and a bachelor’s degree from the UofSC. He currently serves on the State Board of Education and is a member of the Providence Health Board of Trustees and a director for the Midlands Education and Business Alliance.

Jason Rapp

Tuning Up: S.C. arts ed icon passes away

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


Remembering Rose Myers

Arts education in South Carolina owes a lot to Rose Myers. We note with sadness yesterday's news of her passing down in the Lowcountry she improved with her vision and drive. Myers was 84 and passed from complications caused by vascular dementia. From the Post & Courier:

Myers spearheaded the creation of both Ashley River Creative Arts Elementary and Charleston County School of the Arts, two schools that have repeatedly earned state and national recognition for their success blending traditional academics with art education.

S.C. Arts Commission Executive Director David Platts reflected on her life and his introduction to her.

“I met her 20 years ago as a young administrator and remember thinking I had just met an arts rock star. She was an amazing, won’t-take-no-for-an-answer educator, and her reach in this state was broad and deep. What a legacy she leaves!”

Read the full story from the Post & Courier here (subscription possibly required).
 

Jason Rapp

Arts Education Partnership report lauds ABC Project in S.C.

AEP report 'reflects back and projects forward'


Over 25 years ago, the U.S. Department of Education and the National Endowment for the Arts partnered with the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies and Council of Chief State School Officers to create the Arts Education Partnership (AEP) to ensure that all students have equitable access to an excellent arts education.​ - AEP report


A new report from AEP takes a long look at the genesis of the partnership. While it's no surprise to those involved in the work, casual readers might be surprised to know that South Carolina and a few South Carolinians at the right place at the right time figured mightily in how everything came together on a national level. In a Part 2 of the report, former SCAC Executive Director Scott Shanklin-Peterson and Dr. Terry Peterson recount work with Dick Riley in Columbia as governor and Washington as President Clinton's education secretary to get the arts included in sweeping educational reforms in the 1980s and 1990s. The South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) is extremely proud of the ongoing work of the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project, a national model for integrating the arts into K-12 curriculum discussed at length in the AEP report. Together with the South Carolina Dept. of Education and the Winthrop University College of Visual and Performing Arts, the ABC Project continues serving the Palmetto State 31 years after starting and 33 years after the SCAC received a $20,000 Arts in Schools Basic Education planning grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to develop the it. Read the full report here.

Jason Rapp

‘Learning Why’ provides S.C. quality arts ed lessons

Arts in Basic Curriculum Project, SCETV partner for students


A collaboration between the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project (ABC) Project and SCETV is thrilled to highlight great teachers through the in-state television network's "LearningWhy." 

The partnership stems from a singular belief: all students in South Carolina deserve a quality arts education. Through the generosity of great teachers like Elise Helms sharing great lessons, that goal is possible. ABC Project’s mission is to provide leadership to achieve quality arts education for all students. For the past 32 years, ABC Project has worked with schools and districts across the state to invest resources in teacher professionalism to design and create standards-based, quality arts and arts-integrated lessons. As a part of this investment and mission, ABC Project has aimed to collect and publish exemplary lessons that can be shared across the state. Through the partnership with SCETV "LearningWhy," lesson plans are reviewed by content specialists within ABC's network, and then vetted by SCETV for publication. The lessons submitted are from South Carolina Arts Commission ABC Advancement grant applicants who received a top score on a submitted lesson. This year, ABC Project had one teacher who was published. Veteran music teacher Elise Helms’ music lesson, "Making Music with the Pout, Pout Fish," is the culminating lesson on how music can help tell a story. This 2nd-grade lesson asks students to contemplate the question, “how can we use instrument sounds to enhance our storytelling?” Helms’ lesson skillfully combines the use of various classroom percussion instruments along with The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen to guide students as they explore both storytelling and instrumental music. To check out "Making Music with the Pout, Pout Fish," along with other great one-to-one lessons, you can visit www.learningwhy.org. The ABC Project is a long-standing partnership among the South Carolina Arts Commission, Winthrop University, and the South Carolina Dept. of Education.
Helms, a 33-year veteran elementary music educator who has made music education her life's work, feels passionately about the arts being a part of every child's elementary school experience and beyond. Currently, at AC Moore Elementary School in Columbia (Richland One School District), she taught at Irmo Elementary (District Five of Lexington and Richland Counties), where she was chosen Teacher of the Year in 2003. Among her many leadership contributions, she served as lead teacher for District 5 Elementary Music teachers, president of the Elementary Division of South Carolina Music Educators Association, and coach for the Curriculum Leadership Institute for the Arts. She is the co-founder of the District 5 Elementary Honor Choir which was chosen to participate in the Celebration of States in Washington for two different years. Helms earned a bachelor's of music education from Newberry College and a master's in education in administration from the UofSC.

Jason Rapp

On the passing of Heather Hulsey

Arts teacher perishes in aviation tragedy


Official Statement from the S.C. Arts Commission

The South Carolina Arts Commission notes with sadness the tragic passing last week of Heather Hulsey, a middle school arts teacher in Spartanburg County School District Six. According to media reports, the airplane carrying Hulsey, her husband, and her brother and his girlfriend was involved in a midair collision with another aircraft in Alaska. Seven people died, and there were no survivors. In noting her passing, the South Carolina Art Education Association called her a "great art educator, member, and friend." District Six Superintendent Dr. Darryl Owings, in a statement, called the tragedy "beyond words" and that Hulsey was an inspiring teacher, well-loved by the Dawkins Middle School community. The commission board of directors and staff offer our most sincere condolences to Hulsey's family, students, colleagues, and the community of arts educators throughout the state during this time. An obituary is not available at the time of publication.