WHY THE ARTS?
Every child has a creative spirit. For some, it comes alive through the visual arts: turning blank pages and digital canvases into expressions of hope. For others, it breathes through their bodies – transforming notes, choreography, and words into personal statements of joy.
Children develop the technical skills to prepare for these moments through instruction in the arts. Along the way, the arts develop their unique strengths – like self-confidence, creative thinking, self-respect, empathy and perseverance.
So many reasons to support arts education.
A strong and lasting impact.
CAP has undergone several independent research studies, the results of which consistently show significant differences between CAP students and their non-CAP peers.
On average, CAP students:
Evaluation tools include pre- and post-program assessment surveys, artist journals, classroom observation, student performance evaluation, mid-term evaluations of student grade averages and attendance records. Twelve different metrics—seven behavioral and five discipline-specific—are monitored.
Percentage of students who saw improvement in CAP classes:
Demonstrate skills needed to produce quality arts or performance
Actively participate in class sessions
Communicate effectively with peers
Improved in at least one metric
The most important thing I learned in my CAP class was how to believe in myself.
– CAP STUDENT
My experience as an art teacher for the Cathedral Arts Project has been so rewarding because of the impact on and connections with my students. These connections make me appreciate the gift of teaching art every single time I teach class.
– KIMBERLY MILLER, FORMER TEACHING ARTIST
Being a CAP student changed the course of my child’s life. If it wasn’t for CAP, my children would not be string students. One child attending a violin class changed a whole family. Now all four play strings in arts schools at a higher level.
– CAP PARENT
Partnering with the Cathedral Arts Project has been an enjoyable and successful experience for our school. Our third-grade students who participated in the arts integration program outscored our other intermediate grade levels on the ELA state assessment.
– PRINCIPAL, ABESS PARK ELEMENTARY
Research from organizations like the Arts Education Partnership, National Endowment for the Arts and National Guild for Community Arts Education shows clear links between arts involvement and positive outcomes in academics, creative and critical thinking, personal behavior, and social and civic participation.
These benefits reinforce the essential value of the arts to enrich not only individual children, but also their communities.
The convening showcased new research and evidence-based programs that identified the cognitive, social and behavioral outcomes of arts interventions. In response to calls to address “the whole person” in health and education policies, this paper proposes a framework for long-term collaboration between NEA, HHS and other federal agencies to align the arts with specific human developmental outcomes over a person’s lifespan.
A Population-Level Analysis of Associations Between School Music Participation and Academic Achievement
This large-scale study identified evidence of positive relationships between school music participation and high school exam scores in English, mathematics, and science using population-level educational records for over 110,000 students in British Columbia, Canada. Participation in school music (especially instrumental music) was related to higher exam scores, and students with higher levels of school music engagement had higher exam scores.
The study found that students in the program performed better in six categories of literacy and critical thinking skills — including thorough description, hypothesizing and reasoning — than did students who were not in the program. The children were assessed as they discussed a passage in a children’s book, Cynthia Kadohata’s “Kira-Kira,” and a painting by Arshile Gorky, “The Artist and His Mother.”