UWM Peck School of the Arts Awarded Planning Grant for $107,400

emailheader_artdesign_13_14University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) Peck School of the Arts announced today its plans to develop Arts Education/Community Ecosystem (ArtsECO), a sustainable network of support for new and veteran teachers who are committed to teaching through art. ArtsECO will develop teachers as change-makers backed by a strong and sustainable community of arts organizations, non-profits and K-16 school partnerships. This program will recruit and develop thoughtfully engaged, social justice-oriented teachers and support them as they grow into inspired mentors who know how to leverage and share the rich assets of Milwaukee and Southeastern Wisconsin.

The initiative will address three interrelated problems:

* The place of arts education in schools

* The standing of teacher education

* The cost of teacher education in a time of diminishing resources

From now through June 30, a Core Team from the Peck School of the Arts, the UWM School of Education, and representatives from key school and community partners will work to develop an implementation plan. Focus groups and interviews with pre-service, new- and veteran educators, school leaders, community organization representatives, and arts advocates from across the Milwaukee region will inform our planning to ensure that we best meet the needs of ArtsECO partners. This development project is made possible in part by a grant from Margaret A. Cargill Foundation.

Over the course of this planning period, the Core Team will outline a vision and implementation plan for ArtsECO. The goals are to support teachers by building upon our existing network of partners to develop a strong and sustainable community of arts organizations, non-profits, and K-16 school partnerships. At the close of the initial planning period, we will submit a specific plan for implementation and our program will be considered for a longer-term implementation grant.

“Having the time and resources to thoroughly consider and research how we will develop this program is a tremendous opportunity,” says Peck School Associate Dean and ArtsECO project director Kim Cosier. “For decades, the Peck School of the Arts together with the UWM School of Education has worked with our school and community partners to prepare K-12 educators who teach in schools throughout the state and country. This grant will enable us to deepen our impact and if we are successful in obtaining an implementation grant for ArtsECO, we will be able to build an incredibly powerful ecosystem of support throughout the region for teachers and their students and the arts organizations who wish to help them. We are extremely honored that the Margaret A. Cargill Foundation has invited us to engage in this process.”

In addition to Cosier who will lead this project, ArtsECO core team members include Josie Osborne, Anabel deNavas Weeks, Laura Trafi-Prats, Raoul Deal, Rina Kundu, Nancy Mitchel, Christine Woywood from the Peck School; Associate Dean Hope Longwell-Grice and Karen Rigoni from the School of Education; Katie Loss, UWM art education alumna and Principal at Lloyd Barbee Montessori; Jacobo Lovo, art teacher at Bruce Guadalupe Middle School; Sue Pezanoski-Browne art teacher from la Escuela Fratney; and Sally Stanton, Executive Director of Redline. An outside program evaluation specialist is currently being selected for the project.

Many organizations in Milwaukee are also engaged in this early stage of the project, including Arts@ Large, Artists Working in Education, Lynden Sculpture Garden, John Michael Kohler Art Center, UWM’s Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership and Research, the United Community Center and Latino Arts. A Leadership Team is being assembled from across the region to advise us in our planning and we are eager to expand the network as we move forward.

For more information on ArtsECO and how to get involved, please contact Anabel deNavas Weeks, ArtsECO Planning Facilitator at adenavas@uwm.edu

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