With New Name and New Principal, MLK School of the Arts Sharpens Focus

July 27, 2017

Monterey Herald, Claudia Meléndez Salinas – “I want people to be able to walk on this campus and at a glance say ‘that’s an arts school,’” Principal Humphrey said. “I want this to be a vibrant, exciting place, different from other elementary schools you pass by.”the highest levels of the curriculum because they had it delivered in a way that they could understand.'”

Read the full story here.

The Art of Education

July 7, 2017

Beyond the Curtain, Antonia Lee – “’Arts programs unfortunately are the first to go with budget cuts in our school systems,’ says Elizabeth Segerstrom. ‘Through Turnaround Arts, we’re able to give back to these departments directly and hopefully inspire the next generation of performers to grace both the stages at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, as well as many others internationally. Whether it’s music, dance, or fine art, I’ve watched first hand as Turnaround Arts’ commitment to our community’s students almost immediately increases their confidence, ambition, and focus.’”

Read the full story here.

Nowhere to go but up’: A Watts Elementary School Transforms

June 6, 2017

KPCC, Priska Neely – “‘My kids come home excited to tell me about the adventures that they’re experiencing at school,’ said Katia Adams. Her daughter, fourth grader Kayla Drinkard, played the title role of Shrek. ‘I see from two years ago ’til now, my baby’s getting a way better education,’ said Adams.”

Read the full story here.

Arts Program in Poor Performing Schools Boosts Learning

April 26, 2017

VOA News, Elizabeth Lee – “’Art speaks to everyone. Arts isn’t a set aside. It is part of what makes the curriculum rich and exciting and motivating.’ Long added, ‘Because the arts is so universal and speaks across every culture and every language, every kid has an opportunity to access the highest levels of the curriculum because they had it delivered in a way that they could understand.'”

Read the full story here.

Barton’s ‘Seussical’ Performed for Academy Award Winner Tim Robbins

April 19, 2017

Highland Community News, Hector Hernandez, Jr. – “‘I’m here to talk about the future, the future of our country, and that’s these children,’ said Robbins. ‘Art can make a difference in a child’s life. When I was 15 years old I wasn’t doing so well in school when an arts program saved my life. It kept me involved in school and going everyday, and this is true of a lot of children across the country.'”

Read the full story here.

Music Icon Smokey Robinson Energizes Arts Program at Fremont Elementary

April 3, 2017

Recordnet.com, Nicholas Filipas – “Sarah Burke-Baker, an eighth-grader at Fremont Elementary School, has logged many hours of singing and playing trumpet for large crowds as a member of the school’s Los Toritos mariachi band. She has performed for family and friends, to complete strangers across Stockton, and even at the White House last spring in a music workshop hosted by former first lady Michelle Obama. But the nerves were steady — and who could blame her — when she took the microphone and nailed a cover of The Temptations’ 1964 classic “My Girl,” with none other than the man who wrote the classic, music legend Smokey Robinson, smiling at her from the front row.”

Read the full story here.

International Opera Singer Gets Real with Meadow Homes Kids

March 20, 2017

Concord Pioneer, Bev Britton – “‘I love the kids and the teachers there and have always been made to feel a part of the family within the school,’ Canales says. ‘One of the things I think is most important about Turnaround Arts is that it is not a one-off program. We go back, go back often and build relationships. That is key to our success.'”

Read the full story here.

Jason Mraz Shares His Passion for Music with Kids in Barrio Logan

February 27, 2017

NBC7 San Diego, Marianne Kushi – “Mraz says he goes twice a year to Burbank Elementary since the program started there three years ago. He said he hopes he can instill in the children, whose exposure to the arts is limited or none at all, the courage to dream and develop the skills to make those dreams come true.”

Read the full story here.

David Hockney, Frank Gehry Adopt the Arts at East Palo Alto School

January 20, 2017

KQED, Rachael Myrow – “It’s especially important in this community right now, with all the obstacles that students face, to have something like art” said Principal Viviana Espinosa. “It’s a place where they can be comfortable. It’s a place where they can express themselves and create a counter narrative.”

Read the full story here.

Watts Elementary School Draws on the Arts to Transform Itself

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November 11, 2016

KPCC, Priska Neely – Joyner is one of sixteen schools in California that’s part of Turnaround Arts: California, the local branch of a White House program that aims to use arts instruction to push all learning forward – increasing student achievement, attendance and engagement. Joyner is in its first year of the program, and KPCC will be spending the year following the school as it places its bet on the arts as an instrument of change.

Read the full story here.

Avenal Elementary Principal Goes to the White House

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June 7, 2016

The Hanford Sentinel, Cassandra Sandoval – I just never pictured myself going to the White House. My parents emigrated here from Mexico in the 1970s. I am first generous born here. I never thought I would be invited to an event inside the White House.

Read the full story here.

Compton Students Perform at White House Talent Show

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June 2, 2016

Wave Newspapers, Anne Artley – Nine sixth-graders from Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School here performed a piece of spoken word poetry at the Turnaround Arts Talent Show at the White House on May 25, sharing a range of experiences from parents separating to wearing a coconut bra in a school play. First lady Michelle Obama hosted the event to honor the Turnaround Arts Program, a national program created by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities to bring arts and music classes to underperforming schools.

Read the full story here.

Michelle Obama Secures a Post-White House Future for Her School Arts Program

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May 24, 2016

Washington Post, Krissah Thompson – One of Michelle Obama’s key arts programs will continue after she leaves the White House. Management of Turnaround Arts, started five years ago to bring high-quality music, theater, dance and visual arts instruction to underperforming schools, will be housed at the Kennedy Center and carry its imprimatur.

Read the full story here.

Hip-hop Mogul Russell Simmons’ Advice to Stockton Kids: ‘You Can Be Anything’

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May 20, 2016

Recordnet.com, Nicholas Filipas – Entrepreneur, activist and hip-hop producer Russell Simmons was led into a gymnasium at Fremont/Lopez Elementary School and was met with a flood of screams. Most of the third- through fifth-graders had never seen a celebrity in person before. Instead of standing directly on stage, Simmons, dressed in jeans, a sweatshirt and gray baseball cap, sat down to be eye level with the young minds of the future. “I’m very impressed by all the wonderful things happening at your school,’ he told the students. ‘I’m so inspired to be here. So many schools don’t get to practice and appreciate art, and art is so important.”

Read the full story here.

The Power of Paint

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April 15, 2016

New York Times, Park West Gallery – Barton Elementary, just a few miles from the Inland Regional Center, where the terrorist shooting in December shook the community and the nation, is one of 49 schools currently participating in Turnaround Arts. Turnaround Arts, a combination public-private program organized by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, has a mission across 14 states and 27 districts to use arts education as a catalyst to improve the nation’s bottom-performing five percent of schools.

Read the full story here.

School Band Invited to White House

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February 19, 2016

Recordnet.com – The Fremont Elementary School Mariachi Los Toritos band will join 10 schools and community organizations from across the country in Washington, D.C., for a special workshop hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama, the White House announced Friday. More than 130 middle school, high school and college students will take part in an interactive student workshop called ‘The Musical Legacy of Ray Charles’ on Wednesday.

Read the full story here.

At One San Bernardino School, Arts Program Helps Students Bounce Back from Tragedy

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December 24, 2015

KPCC, Priska Neely – Exactly two weeks before this assembly, 14 people were shot and killed at the Inland Regional Center — just 15 minutes from the school. Barton Elementary, like every other school in the district, went on lockdown. In the weeks since, San Bernardino’s schools have been figuring out how to talk to students about what happened and how to move on. Barton has since has stepped up its security procedures and things are returning to normal. But staff also found that one of the best ways to help their students cope was already a big part of their curriculum: the school’s arts program.

Listen to the full story here.

Opera Singer Inspires Students During Meadow Homes Elementary Visit

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December 2, 2015

East Bay Times, Dana Guzzetti – The use of music, dance, dram,a and computer instruction, combined with teacher training and community partnerships has allowed Meadow Homes to outperform similar schools in the district and the state, according to Principal Sandra Wilbanks. “We really appreciate being a Turnaround Arts school,” Wilbanks said. ‘Carla’s visit was inspirational for the teachers as well as the students.”

Read the full story here.

Eighth Graders Reconnect with Architect Frank Gehry in Los Angeles

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June 16, 2015

Two Rivers Tribune, Carla Pirovano – Forty-seven eighth-grade students from Hoopa Valley Elementary School (HVES) spent a week, from May 31 – June 7 in Southern California, where they reconnected with renowned architect Frank Gehry. During the trip, eight graders and their chaperones toured Gehry’s offices and worked on a lighting project for their school.

Gehry first visited HVES last year through the Turnaround Arts California initiative.

Read the full pdf.

Bravo, Burbank Elementary School!

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June 11, 2015

Adobe for Education, Emily Simas, Adobe, and ConnectED – These innovative art programs are the brainchild of Robert Hoang, who joined the Burbank team last year to teach visual arts to K–6 students, and to work with his colleagues to plan arts integration lessons. Hoang co-leads Burbank’s partnership with Turnaround Arts: California, a signature program of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities that seeks to advance education in a select group of elementary and middle schools in the state. To support this work, Hoang secured a software donation from Adobe & ConnectED to help increase technological literacy for Burbank’s students by integrating digital media into the art curriculum.

Read the full story here.

 

Jesse Tyler Ferguson: Modern Family ‘Has Fed My Desire to Be a Dad’

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March 24, 2015

People, Lydia Price – The actor, 39, has some real-life experience with kids. Ferguson is heavily involved with Turnaround Arts, an organization that supplies artistic resources to low-income elementary and middle schools.

“I was just with them, sitting in on a rehearsal for Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,’”he said. “One of the boys was worried – ‘I have to hug a girl and I’m so embarrassed and I don’t want to do it!’ So I teach them, ‘Oh, you’re just playing a character and it’s fun, you aren’t yourself anymore, you’re another person.’ They’re very sweet kids. I’m thrilled to be working with them,” he said.

Read the full story here.

 

 

How California Schools Are Using Art to Boost Achievement

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March 15, 2015

KQED, Zaidee Stavely – This school year, Mary Chapa was selected to be one of 10 “turnaround arts” schools in the state. It’s a national initiative, led by Michelle Obama, to improve academic achievement at low-performing schools by flooding them with art supplies and teaching artists…

The turnaround arts program has been in place at Mary Chapa only for a few months, but all the teachers have had some training. If you peek in the classrooms, you can find fifth-graders doing freeze theater tableaus of the Revolutionary War, or second-graders painting oil spills for a unit on the environment.

Read the full story here.

Kerry Washington, more than just another pretty face in Hollywood

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March/April 2015

Ebony, Aliya S. King – Standing in front of the nearly 100 students from Inglewood, Calif.’s, Warren Lane Elementary School, Washington’s booming voice and stern look has transformed her into the quintessential schoolteacher… Washington is no stranger to the children. As part of the Turnaround Arts program, she comes into the school regularly, interacting with the students and introducing them to the arts through field trips and acting classes. On this day, they’re traveling to UCLA to see a live performance of The Hot Chocolate Nutcracker, Debbie Allen’s interpretation of the legendary ballet. “Today is very important,” states Washington, addressing the youngsters. “The performers know that a group of students from Warren Lane will be in the audience, so how you behave matters. Think about what you want them to think of your school? And what do you want them to think of you?”

Read the full pdf.

NEA’s Jane Chu visits L.A. arts programs, calls for focus on education

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NEA’s Jane Chu visits L.A. arts programs and calls for focus on education. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

February 27, 2015

Los Angeles Times, Tre’vell Anderson – Amid a national conversation about the decline of arts education, National Endowment for the Arts Chairwoman Jane Chu came to Southern California this week and visited area arts programs including one at the Colburn School focusing on low-income sixth- and seventh-grade musicians.

Appointed by President Obama eight months ago, Chu said she brings to the position the experience of being the daughter of Chinese immigrants – something that informs her perspective on arts education.

Read the full story here.

Arts Program Leads to Better Student Performance at Compton School

February 25, 2015

CBS Los Angeles – Students at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School are happy and engaged, attendance is up and most importantly – so are test scores. The turnaround is credited to Turnaround Arts: California – a program of President Obama’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, which uses arts education to help improve struggling schools.

Read the full story here.

Hollywood star Tim Robbins visits Hayward school

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February 20, 2015

San Jose Mercury News, Rebecca Parr – Academy Award-winning actor Tim Robbins spent Friday at a Hayward elementary school, joining children in a staged reading, singing with the chorus, answering questions and watching students work on computer art projects as he promoted the arts in schools.

His visit was part of Turnaround Arts, a program to improve students’ grades and attendance through the arts.

“I am here today because of the importance of arts in education. When I was in school, I went from being a good student in grade school to a struggling student in high school. The arts became a lifeline for me,” he said Friday.
Read the full story here.

The Art of Success

February 2015

Scholastic, Andrea Cooper – You couldn’t miss the drummer in the backward baseball cap among the sea of student musicians. It really was Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Chad Smith, of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, jamming with a bunch of third graders at Mary Chapa Literacy and Technology Academy… Smith has adopted the Greenfield, California, school as part of Turnaround Arts, a public-private program developed by the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities (PCAH). Turnaround uses the arts to improve learning, behavior, and academic performance in some of the nation’s most challenged elementary and middle schools. Qualifying schools are high poverty and low performing, in the bottom five percent in their states. “For me to go there, it’s not a big deal— I just show up,” Smith says. “To them, it’s like, ‘Wow! Someone cares about us.’ A little bit of inspiration, a little bit of hope, really goes a long way.”

Read the full story here.

Jason Mraz ‘pumped’ to be arts ambassador for California school

 

 

January 25, 2015

TODAY, Erica Hill – Attendance and test scores are up at some of the worst performing schools across he country thanks to a new arts-based curriculum and one school in California has quite the vocal “Arts Ambassador,” Jason Mraz. TODAY’s Erica Hill met up with Jason Mraz to discuss what motivated him to join the Turnaround Arts program.

Arts education program brings opportunities to Hoopa school

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Hoopa Valley Elementary students last week work with architect Frank Gehry to design buildings for the Hoopa community.

January 23, 2015

Times Standard, Aaron West – Hoopa Valley Elementary School, one of the 10 school in California and 35 nationwide to be selected to participate in the Turnaround Arts program, began at its foray into the innovative arts campaign at the beginning of this year, and Principal Rose Francia said the changes are already happening.

“We’ve seen tremendous results so far this year,” Francia said. “Our staff, our students – the whole community, really – is very excited.”

Read the full story here.

NAMM 2015: Turnaround study touts benefits of arts education for kids

Actress Alfre Woodard, speaking at the 2015 NAMM show in Anaheim at a panel on the Turnaround Arts program for underperforming schools, said, "Art and music and theater help you learn what it is to be human." (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Actress Alfre Woodard, speaking at the 2015 NAMM show in Anaheim at a panel on the Turnaround Arts program for underperforming schools, said, “Art and music and theater help you learn what it is to be human.” (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

January 23, 2015

Los Angeles Times, Randy Lewis – The NAMM Foundation is one of several public and private partners supporting the Turnaround Arts initiative, which was created by the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities in conjunction with the Department of Education and the White House Domestic Policy Council… the NAMM Foundation has helped implement the music programs in the Turnaround Arts schools and is providing grants for all the Phase 2 schools, including 10 in California, a NAMM spokeswoman said.

Read the full story here.

Kerry Washington: On the importance of arts in schools

Students at Warren Lane Elementary are eager to ask Washington questions.

December 18, 2014

Los Angeles Sentinel, Zon D’Amour – Emmy nominated actress, Kerry Washington, star of the ABC hit series Scandal, recently visited Warren Lane Elementary School in Inglewood, CA. She is a member of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities (PCAH) which has a signature program entitled Turnaround Arts…

Though [Kerry] Washington became an actress, she stresses that Turnaround Arts is not about training the next generation of artists. It’s about creating better learners.

Read the full story here.

After years with no arts classes, Compton elementary readies a holiday concert

First-graders Valeria Beltran, left, and Jarret Moore take part in a music class at Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Compton on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014. The class is supported by Turnaround Arts, a national program that brings arts education to high-poverty elementary and middle schools. MAYA SUGARMAN/KPCC
First-graders Valeria Beltran, left, and Jarret Moore take part in a music class at Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Compton on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014. The class is supported by Turnaround Arts, a national program that brings arts education to high-poverty elementary and middle schools.
MAYA SUGARMAN/KPCC

December 15, 2014

KPCC, Mary Plummer – This year marked the first time for arts classes at King Elementary, a development made possible with funding help from Turnaround Arts — a national initiative of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities…

Students are not only receiving music instruction in a school that previously didn’t have it. They are learning about Michelangelo and other artists, and teachers are working on blending arts into other subjects.

Read the full story here.

Drummer Chad Smith rocks out with Greenfield school

November 13, 2014

KSBW, Amy Larson – For nearly three hours, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame drummer talked with students about using the arts as a fun, alternative way to excel in school, told them inspirational stories, and had a drum jam session.

Smith went to Greenfield as part of first lady Michelle Obama’s Turnaround Arts program, which provides intensive arts education resources to struggling schools across the country.

Read the full story here.

Barack Obama Joins RHCP’s Chad Smith for White House Talent Show

President Barack Obama is hugged by students as he makes a surprise visit to the White House Talent Show. Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images
President Barack Obama is hugged by students as he makes a surprise visit to the White House Talent Show. Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

May 22, 2014

Rolling Stone, Jason Newman – Michelle Obama enlisted some big names to assist her in the White House’s first talent show, including Sarah Jessica Parker, Alfre Woodard, Trombone Shorty and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, but it was a surprise guest who upstaged them all.

“I’ve got some talent,” said Barack Obama at the end of the performance Tuesday afternoon. “But I wasn’t invited to be part of the show.”

Read the full story here.

Elizabeth Banks, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Rashida Jones Join White House’s Turnaround Arts Initiative

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 24: Actress Kerry Washington sits with students during an event while visiting the Savoy School with U.S. first lady Michelle Obama May 24, 2013 in Washington, DC. The Savoy School, once one of the lowest performing schools in the District of Columbia, has shown significant signs of improvement since being designated as one of eight schools selected last year for the Turnaround Arts Initiative by the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 24: Actress Kerry Washington sits with students during an event while visiting the Savoy School with U.S. first lady Michelle Obama May 24, 2013 in Washington, DC. The Savoy School, once one of the lowest performing schools in the District of Columbia, has shown significant signs of improvement since being designated as one of eight schools selected last year for the Turnaround Arts Initiative by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

May 20, 2014

Variety – The expanded program will extend Turnaround Arts funding to 35 schools in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Oregon and Washington D.C. To promote awareness of the effort, the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities has enlisted a number of showbiz notables to serve as “Turnaround Artist” reps, including Kerry Washington.

Read the full story here.

Jason Mraz to Burbank Elementary: ‘I’m Yours’

Grammy Award-winning Oceanside troubadour Jason Mraz will kick off his new tour in August at the Sean Diego Civic Theatre. — John Gastaldo
Grammy Award-winning Oceanside troubadour Jason Mraz will kick off his new tour in August at the Sean Diego Civic Theatre. — John Gastaldo

May 20, 2014

U-T San Diego, Maureen Magee – Mraz, who lives in Oceanside and got his start in San Diego coffee houses more than a decade ago, is among several artists — including actors Forest Whitaker and Kerry Washington; musicians Marc Anthony and Chad Smith; and architect Frank Gehry — who will partner with individual schools working to immerse students in the arts, while also incorporating painting, dance and poetry into academic lessons.

Read the full story here.

President’s Turnaround Arts Program Expanded

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May 20, 2014

Huffington Post, John M. Eger – First lady Michelle Obama, the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH), the U.S. Department of Education, the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) and a number of top performers and artists met Monday at the White House to showcase the importance of arts and music education to student achievement.

At this event, Mrs. Obama talked about the success of the Turnaround Arts Initiative and announced that the program is now expanded to include 35 schools in Des Moines, Chicago, Boston, Minnesota, Louisiana, and California.

Read the full story here.

Committee On The Arts And Humanities Announces Expansion Of Turnaround Arts Program

May 20, 2014

The White House, Office of the First Lady – The expanded program will be working in 35 schools in districts in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Oregon and Washington D.C., with plans to expand to up to 60 schools across the country. Studies show that when students participate in the arts they are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, have higher GPA/SAT scores, are more engaged and cooperative with teachers and peers, and are more self-confident and better able to express their ideas. These benefits are particularly pronounced in high-poverty, low-performing schools.

Read the full story here.