WASHINGTON, DC (March 24, 2021) -- Representative Chellie Pingree (D-ME) has introduced a Resolution to the House of Representatives designating the weeks of March 28 through April 10, 2021, as National Young Audiences Arts for Learning Week (YA Week). The designation of YA Week will honor the contributions Young Audiences Arts for Learning (YA) has made to students and schools nationwide through arts in education programs.
The Resolution, introduced by Representative Pingree, who serves as co-chair of the Congressional Arts Caucus, and co-sponsored by Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), who serves as co-chair of the Congressional STEAM Caucus, highlights the work of the YA network and encourages Americans to recognize the important contributions the arts make to society.
The Resolution emphasizes that arts education, comprising a rich array of disciplines, "is an essential element of a complete and well-rounded education for all students," enabling them “to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills, imagination and creativity, discipline, alternative ways to communicate and express feelings and ideas, and cross-cultural understanding, which supports academic success nationwide as well as personal growth outside the classroom."
“The arts are vital to the education of every student, inspiring creativity and imagination both inside and outside of the classroom,” said Pingree. “As co-chair of the bipartisan Congressional Arts Caucus, I’m proud to introduce this resolution recognizing Young Audiences Week. I’m glad to have Young Audiences Arts for Learning supporting an expansive network of teachers who are committed to arts education, serving more than 5 million students nationwide.”
“Arts education and STEAM programs expand horizons and empower students to reach their full potential,” added Congresswoman Bonamici. “Students benefit from the arts, and I will continue advocating for increased funding to make sure all students have access to the well-rounded education they deserve. I’m glad to join Young Audiences in this important effort.”
An annual advocacy and awareness initiative first championed by conductor Leonard Bernstein in 1971, YA Week has grown into a national, two-week celebration of arts in education observed each spring. This year’s YA Week festivities center around spotlighting innovative virtual programs pioneered by YA affiliates, and advocating for the ongoing value of the arts for children and school communities, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and beyond.
“YA Week is an opportunity to showcase and celebrate the deep and demonstrable impact of an arts-integrated education on students’ learning, engagement, and social emotional wellbeing,” said David A. Dik, National Executive Director of Young Audiences Arts for Learning. “We are proud to work collectively with our affiliates during YA Week to bring national and local awareness to the importance of the arts -- now more than ever -- within a well-rounded education for all young people.”
For more information on YA Week and ways to get involved, please visit www.youngaudiences.org/yaweek
About Young Audiences Arts for Learning
Founded in 1952, Young Audiences Arts for Learning’s mission is to inspire young people and expand their learning through the arts. We are the nation’s largest arts in education network, comprising local affiliates across the country that collectively impact over 5 million young people each year. The national Young Audiences Arts for Learning network works collaboratively to advance arts in education through advocacy, communications, fundraising, program development, professional learning, and other support. To learn more about Young Audiences Arts for Learning and explore our national network, please visit: www.youngaudiences.org
Young Audiences Arts for Learning