The Art of Supporting Student Success

with co-author Sherri Wilson

Art_EducationA picture is worth a thousand words! Next time you visit your school, take out your phone and take a picture of something around you that shows evidence of student success.

Look at your picture. What elements of the picture lead you to believe that student success is happening in your building? Do you see examples of high quality student work? Do you see evidence that learning standards are met?

The PTA National Standards for Family School Partnerships were developed to empower PTA leaders, parents, educators, community members and students to work together for the educational success of all children. The third of the six standards is Supporting Student Success. Families and school staff should continuously collaborate to support students’ learning and healthy development both at home and at school, and have regular opportunities to strengthen their knowledge and skills to do so effectively.

Arts programs allow for families and school staff to collaborate in ways that prepare students for the next America. The Arts Education Partnership states that, “America’s global stature, culture of innovation, and entrepreneurial spirit depend on the strength of a world-class education system. Perhaps now more than ever—as the country becomes increasingly diverse, the world more interconnected, and the workplace more oriented around technology and creativity—arts education is key to such a system and to ensuring students’ success in school, work, and life.”

Consider the following resources to support students in school, in work and in life:

  • Explore the new National Arts Standards.
  • Host a Creative Career Fair to match student’s interests in the arts with today’s Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math workforce.
  • Apply for a Mary Lou Anderson Grant to support art projects for the whole school community.

The Arts — and the National PTA Reflections® program, in particular — can be a valuable tool for building stronger partnerships in your school community and meeting the Standard for Supporting Student Success.

Read more to learn about each of the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships and the steps you can take with PTA Reflections to meet them. Also, consider enrolling in the National PTA School of Excellence program to gain new ways to engage all families in each of the standards. National PTA School of Excellence is a recognition program that supports and celebrates partnerships between PTAs and schools to enrich the educational experience and overall well-being for all students. Contact or call (800)307-4782 for more info.

Now that we’ve learned about the basic elements of supporting student success, take another look at your picture and write an artist statement to accompany your photo. Share your photo with us on twitter (@ClarkEthan & @PTAswilson)!

Third in a series of blog posts co-authored by National PTA’s Senior Manager of Family Engagement Sherri Wilson & Manager of Arts in Education Ethan Clark.


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