Posts Tagged ‘Susan Potters’

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Arts Advocacy Day

December 1, 2016

Get Your Students Involved in Advocacy Day 2017!

Arts students became arts advocates at last year’s Arts Education Advocacy Day.  The Maine Alliance for Arts Education (MAAE) and its community arts organization partners around the state invited arts teachers to send their screen-shot-2016-11-27-at-2-28-16-pmmost enthusiastic students to meet one-on-one with their elected representatives at the Statehouse. Close to 200 students came, representing every arts discipline and over half of the senate and house districts. The legislators were delighted to meet with the students and in some cases brought them right into their offices and Senate and House chambers.

And meeting their legislators was only the beginning. At a dance workshop and performances downstairs in the Hall of Flags the students had an opportunity to meet each other and celebrate the arts together.

screen-shot-2016-11-27-at-2-30-17-pmThe statewide expression of arts education support was also reflected by the exhibit tables in the Hall of Flags, which were organized county by county. Deb Bickford’s Westbrook High School art team provided identifying signs.

At Advocacy Day 2017 on Wednesday, March 8th, we will not only welcome the students again; this year a committee of students from around the state will be helping to plan the day’s activities. We already have some new ideas to help students meet each other, and to make the day even more exciting. The program will begin at 9:30 a.m. and end by 1:00 p.m. Lunch is provided. We’ll be looking for two student advocates (of any age) from each state legislative district (note: that’s legislative, not school district). We hope you as arts educators can help us recruit those students and offer them that opportunity. And if you can come too, so much the better!

screen-shot-2016-11-27-at-2-30-03-pmTo get involved and find out more, contact Susan Potters, MAAE director, at spotters@maineartsed.org. For a full report and more photos of last spring’s Advocacy Day, visit MAAE’s website, www.maineartsed.org.
 At Advocacy Day 2017 on Wednesday, March 8th, we will not only welcome the students again; this year a committee of students from around the state will be helping to plan the day’s activities.  We already have some new ideas to help students meet each other, and to make the day even more exciting.

Thanks to Susan Potters for providing the information for this blog post.

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Great Day for Arts Education

March 28, 2016

Arts Ed Advocacy Day a success
IMG_2009 - Version 2On Thursday, March 24 the State House in Augusta was mobbed with students articulating what the arts mean to them, individually and collectively. Their messages were clear and legislators from all regions of Maine were listening.

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Biddeford Intermediate School Select Chorus under the direction of music educator and MALI Teacher Leader, Andrea Wollstadt

Maine Alliance for Arts Education (MAAE) directed by Susan Potters accompanied by many hands to organize the day. CONGRATULATIONS Susan! About 200 students representing elementary, middle, and high school were scheduled to meet with the representatives and senators from their regions.

Following the meetings students gathered in the Hall of Flags where there were performances and many were engaged in singing, dancing, poetry reciting, and visiting county tables with arts education information.

 

In Susan’s words, from MAAE website:

IMG_2003After the legislators themselves came downstairs a formal program included remarks by Acting Commissioner of the Department of Education, William Beardsley; Maine Arts Commission Arts Education Director, Argy Nestor; Farnsworth Museum Education Director, Roger Dell; Maine Resilience Building Network Co-facilitator, Sue Mackey Andrews; and Arts Education Program Manager at Americans for the Arts, Jeff Poulin. There were also student performances by the Biddeford Intermediate School Select Chorus, conducted by Andrea Wollstadt, by a Bangor High School English class working with teaching artist Katenia Keller, that had choreographed a piece collaboratively, and an art advocacy group speaking piece performed by SLAM! from SAD 33 in Aroostook County, directed by Theresa Cerceo.

It was a full day! But this Advocacy Day’s significance as a day of firsts was in the students themselves… not only in their sheer number (a first for the State House), but also as a statewide gathering of students involved in all art forms – visual art, music, dance, theater and poetry – meeting each other and feeling empowered. So this day was a first, but it wasn’t the last!

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Makayla and Cayden, students from Marshwood High School with music educator and MALI Leadership Team member Kate Smith are all smiles at Arts Ed Advocacy Day!

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Student Leaders in the Arts Movement (SLAM) presenting during the program.

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Senator Brian Langly, co-chair of the Education and Cultural Affairs Committee speaks to students in the Hall of Flags.

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Maine Department of Education Visual and Performing Arts Specialist Beth Lambert, music educator at Central Elementary School Kate Smith, and art educator from Dr. Levesque Elem, Wisdom Middle/High School, MSAD #33, Theresa Cerceo. Both Kate and Theresa are members of the Maine Arts Leadership Initiative Leadership Team.

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WERU – Arts Alive

September 7, 2015

Listen to the archive

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Susan Potters, Jen Nash, Michael Donahue

I mentioned last week that the WERU Arts Alive program invited a group to discuss arts education and advocacy week, September 14-18. The program has been archived so you can access it and listen to your colleague, music educator from Sebasticook Middle School and Maine Arts Leadership Initiative Teacher Leader Jen Nash. Also participating in the program were Susan Potters, Executive Director of the Maine Alliance for Arts Education, Jeff Poulin, Arts Education Program Director from the Americans for the Arts, and me, Argy Nestor. Michael Donahue is the host of WERU, Maine Arts Alive and did a wonderful job.

To access the program on WERU Community Radio, MaineArtsAlive, please go to the site http://archives.weru.org/maine-arts-alive/, click on Public Affairs Archives in the lower right, scroll down to MAINEARTSALIVE and click on title; or

go directly to MaineArtsAlive.org and click on “Program Information” and click on “recent programs” drop down.  This is the direct link: http://archives.weru.org/maine-arts-alive/2015/08/maine-arts-alive-82515/

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