Opening Session Presentation NCAS

October 6, 2013

Maine Arts Educators will get first-hand info on the National Core Arts Standards

Screen shot 2013-10-03 at 9.40.55 PMWe fortunate that Lynn Tuttle from the Department of Education in Arizona is traveling to Maine for the statewide biennial arts education conference! Lynn’s session is titled Maine and the National Core Arts Standards.

The National Coalition for Core Arts Standards is a group committed to the development of the next generation of arts education standards. Maine educators have reviewed drafts of the PreK-8 standards and have provided feedback to the writing teams. Presently the draft of the high school standards are being reviewed by the public. You have until October 21 to do so. The draft is located at http://nccas.wikispaces.com/.

Lynn Tuttle, one of the national leaders coordinating the revision of the National Standards in the Arts, will present the context and history behind the revision as well as describe the process of revising the standards. The goal of the presentation and discussion is to provide the Maine arts education community with an overview of the context and purpose of the standards as well as an opportunity to have questions answered about the current NCAS draft.

Lynn will also do a follow-up workshop for those who wish to continue the discussion from the opening session called More on the National Core Arts Standards. And the description:             Want to know more about the National Core Arts Standards? Wondering how the proposed standards may influence and support high quality teaching and learning in the arts? If so, this follow-up session with the presenter Lynn Tuttle, Director of Arts Education, Arizona Department of Education, facilitated by Bronwyn Sale, Lecturer in Education at Bates College, will provide the opportunity for participants to ask questions in an interactive discussion format.

Along with the opening session there are over 30 workshops to select from to attend during the day.

You can register for the conference at https://tickets.collinscenterforthearts.org/. The $80 registration cost includes lunch. PLEASE NOTE: No purchase orders will be accepted.

You can learn about the workshops being offered at https://mainearts.maine.gov/Pages/Media-and-Performing/conference-education-workshops or Friday’s blog post.

If you have questions please email me at argy.nestor@maine.gov.

One comment

  1. Here’s my take on the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards (NCCAS). For example, an arts educator already knows the fundamentals of their art form. Has anything changed with regard to principles and techniques that have been discovered that radically changes what kids should learn about a given art form? No. The challenge therefore is to teach these basic elements of arts practice in ways that conform to and meet the expectations of Common Core, not to study an entirely separate set of standards such as the NCCAS. Otherwise, arts education will continue to decline in America’s public schools.


    In the real world of education, administrators don’t really care whether or not arts specialists conform to the NCCAS as that framework is merely voluntary and the set of standards principals and superintendents really care about are the Common Core set of standards. Because student success on assessments based on Common Core will determine whether those administrators keep their jobs and play a significant role in all teachers’ evaluations, including eventually those of arts specialists. Then why not shift the focus of teaching practice to meet the expectations and developing the habits of mind required by this new paradigm for teaching and learning without violating the integrity of arts content? Juxtaposing the NCCAS with Common Core standards does not reveal an adequate alignment between the two.

    In the real world of the professional performing arts, the first things you think about when creating a production is what limitations do you have. Such as; how much time is available, where will it be performed, what personnel are involved, what resources are required, and how much money do you have to work with?

    Thus, when constructing a document such as the NCCAS, they should provide grade level models that delineate who is going to do it, with how many kids, over what span of time, in what venue, with what resources and how much it ought to cost. Otherwise, this is merely an aspirational document, not one rooted in reality. In other words, the working context that arts specialists contend with. The reality for an arts specialist, in most states, is that the cumulative amount of contact time (dosage) with a given cohort of students is a little over twenty….four…..hours! On average, 42 minutes a week times 36 weeks in the school year. If kids had to do all of what is outlined in the NCCAS, in any of the five art forms, they wouldn’t have time to learn anything else!

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