Archive for October 18th, 2011


Emails, Phone Calls, Questions about National Standards

October 18, 2011


This blog post is to provide clarification around the national standards work for arts education. I have received questions, emails, and phone calls from arts educators and others wondering about where their local work fits with the “Common Core State Standards” (CCSS) and what is happening with the national work in arts education. Hopefully this post will answer questions and provide you with information to help guide your work at the local level.

The National Coalition for Core Arts Standards (NCCAS) coalition is a newly formed partnership of organizations and states who will lead the revision of the 1994 National Standards for Arts Education. The NCCAS plans to complete its work and release new, national voluntary arts education standards by December, 2012. The standards will describe what students should know and be able to do as a result of a quality curricular arts education program. NCCAS is committed to developing a next generation of voluntary arts education standards that will build on the foundation created by the 1994 document, support the 21st-century needs of students and teachers, help ensure that all students are college and career ready, and affirm the place of arts education in a balanced core curriculum.

NCCAS will make the creation of the new arts standards an inclusive process, with input from a broad range of arts educators and decision-makers. The revised standards will be grounded in arts education best practice drawn from the United States and abroad, as well as a comprehensive review of developmental research.

The organizations who are partners in the NCCAS:

At the present time Maine arts educators are responsible for the Maine’s 2007 Learning Results: Parameters for Essential Instruction which are a comprehensive response to the educational needs of Maine students. This is described in the legislated document Regulation 132.

You may have read the post earlier this week called National Coalition for Core Arts Standards Seeking Candidates. The NCCAS coalition is seeking teams of 10 content experts for each of the discipline areas of dance, music, theatre and visual arts to help develop the next generation of voluntary arts standards. Each discipline writing team will include a balance of members across specific areas of expertise, geography, diversity and experience. Individuals interested in serving on a writing committee can apply at The application process will close October 27, 2011.

What can you do to keep abreast of the progress of standards work for arts education?

  • Read the blog on a regular basis for updates – I will provide updates as the work progresses.
  • Check the NCCAS wiki page at – as changes occur there will be news releases documented there.
  • Be proactive at the local level providing information on the arts education standards work as it unfolds.
  • Stay abreast of Maine’s arts assessment initiative so you can communicate with your administration, colleagues, and parents.

We are at an exciting time in education with many shifts that will benefit all students being successful! If you have questions, concerns, or suggestions please post them in the comment section or email me at

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