Blog Posts for Tennessee

The Importance of State Captains for Arts Advocacy Day

Posted by Eleanor Shingleton , Apr 13, 2016 0 comments

There is one thing without which Arts Advocacy Day could not happen—State Arts Advocacy Captains!  Though Americans for the Arts’ State Arts Advocacy Captains are instrumental in fighting for the arts year-round, their work is also integral to the success of Arts Advocacy Day each spring.

State Arts Advocacy Captains are the eyes and ears on the ground in each state nationwide, serving to recruit the best and most dedicated advocates from their state to attend Arts Advocacy Day. During the months leading up to Arts Advocacy Day, captains make sure colleagues, artists, university students, and concerned members of their states know the importance of bringing your voice to Capitol Hill to meet with your Members of Congress directly in the fight for arts and arts education.  

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Aggregate Arts

Posted by Mary Anne Phan, Mar 09, 2016 0 comments

Mary Anne Phan is the most recent winner of the NABE Foundation/Americans for the Arts Scholarship Award.

Since the age of five, I cannot remember a day where I have not held a violin in my hands. After sawing away at a wooden box for fifteen years, I’ve certainly learned some lessons beyond how to perform an informed interpretation of Bach. The inflection point of my violin career came from studying the legendary Mozart Concerto in G Major. Every violinist knows it, has played it, and has a different opinion on just about every note in the piece. Revelation came when my teacher paused and asked “What’s your plan for that first line?” As an eleven year old I had no semblance of what she meant, but her words resonate with me to this day.

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Creative Assessment for the Arts

Posted by Tina Atkinson, Feb 12, 2016 1 comment

All across America, students and teachers are hard at work on the business of learning. Students attend classes, set goals and complete work that demonstrates what they are learning, while teachers check and double check that standards, benchmark and mastery are being met. That is, until about the 100th day of school…that’s when we all enter the shadow of…THE TEST. Everything changes in the shadow of the test, from the way teachers teach to the format of student practice, and it’s not changing for the better. Is there a better way to assess student growth than to bubble in recalled facts for a computer to score?

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“Waiving” Goodbye to No Child Left Behind

Posted by Narric Rome, Kate McClanahan, Dec 02, 2015 9 comments

Over the last few years, Americans for the Arts has been covering each attempt by Congress to reauthorize the Elementary & Secondary Education Act, most recently recognized as No Child Left Behind.
We are pleased to say that this might be the final in a series of blog posts capturing the legislative efforts over the past few years. We began covering legislative developments in 2011, 2013 and then the 2015 actions (January, February, July, and September) that led to this final bill.

Wait, This Year Was Fast…Too Fast?

It’s true. Bringing Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), a former governor, together with Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), a former preschool teacher, has led to legislative advancement usually unseen and unheard of: unanimous Senate committee approval; an 81-17 Senate vote; nearly unanimous (38-1) Conference Committee approval, and now expected final passage in both houses and a presidential signature! Wow.


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The Arts in Memphis: Transforming Communities, Defining Brands

When we think of sectors of society that help to solve the challenges of underserved communities, some of the first that come to mind are education, healthcare, and job training. The Arts? Not so much. But the Arts can improve quality of life, transform the human condition, and amplify a voice for a community or neighborhood. When asked about the word "brand," arts groups think of design, color, websites, and logos. Rarely do we think of social change and brand in the Arts. Something is happening in Memphis that is about to change the way we think about the brand of the Arts in our communities.

Below is a conversation between Linda Steele, Chief Engagement and Outreach Officer at ArtsMemphis, and Chris McLeod, an Arts Marketing and Branding expert and member of the ArtsMemphis National Community Engagement Advisory Council, about the arts re-branding revolution that is occurring in Memphis.

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The Cultural District: The Key to a City’s Heart

Posted by Gayle Kaler, Feb 05, 2015 0 comments

Cultural districts are the heartbeat of a city. They are the distinctive part that makes your city unique and reveals the character and spirit of your town. They are vital to the sustainability and creativeness of a city, but so often these districts are forgotten and underutilized as a tool for economic growth and viable livability.

As Mayor of Paducah, Kentucky, a city of approximately 25,000, I have seen first-hand how the rejuvenation of a cultural district can have a significant impact on the economic stability and viable livability of an area. Our local government and concerned citizens have invested in, nurtured and supported the growth of our local arts district for many years and we are reaping great rewards from that investment. Paducah has used artist relocation programs, district rejuvenation projects, fiber art attractions, and cultural organization partnerships to create an arts district that is having an impact on both the local economy and the international playing field.

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