ARTISTS & EDUCATION PROGRAM
The AFA started the program in 1989 with a simple premise - if artists could go into schools for longer than a day - what would happen?
Students started to work directly with artists and these actors, dancers, painters, poets, sculptors and writers influenced the way the arts are experienced in Alberta. Students learned to pursue the arts through direct education with these artists. Result - the number of arts-based learning schools in Alberta is one of the highest in Canada.
THE 5% TO 50% STORY
The Alberta Foundation for the Arts (AFA) was asked by the Conservative Government to make a 5% budget cut in 2015. For the AFA that was roughly a $1 million cut. They chose to focus that cut on only 2 programs.
The Artists and Education program took a 50% CUT resulting in a $500,000 loss.
Why was the 5% cut the AFA applied as a 50% cut to schools? The AFA needs to spread the cut out over more programs and give money back to the Artists and Education program.
THE BIG PICTURE
In 2010 The AFA went even farther and cut the program 100%. That cut was reversed almost immediately when people from multiple parties called the cut into question. In the end the Minister of Education took the Minister of Culture to task in the Legislature and the cut was completely reversed.
LETS TAKE ACTION NOW. LET'S REVERSE THESE CUTS.
ARTISTS & EDUCATION GRANT DETAILS
BENEFITS OF THIS PROGRAM
- Students in Alberta connect with all genres of the arts
- Supports teachers in life-long learning through collaboration with professional artists
- Supports programs and equipment that school boards cannot afford to offer to students
- Primary means to support interactions between kids and artists, especially in rural areas
- Hundreds of thousands of student-to-artist experiences each year take place in this program
- The current funding is enough for each school to do a residency once every 20 years
- The total funding to 2000 schools is about half of what some of the large professional arts organizations get from the AFA as a single operating grant
- In 2008-09 there were 264 residencies approved with an an AFA budget of just under $1.3 million
- The school sector is the largest presenting sector in the province - and receives the smallest amount of funding from the AFA.