On October 13, 2020, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a motion authored by Supervisors Sheila Kuehl and Kathryn Barger to adopt the Arts for All Children, Youth, and Families: Los Angeles County’s New Regional Blueprint for Arts Education, which aims to bring arts education to young people throughout LA County.
Developed by the LA County Arts Education Collective, this Blueprint is an update of the 2002 Arts for All: LA County Regional Blueprint for Arts Education, which focused exclusively on in-school arts education. The new Blueprint presents an expanded approach with strategies that reach beyond school to include arts instruction for all students, across all grade levels, in all public schools; expanded opportunities for arts education after school; year-round community-based arts learning; access to careers in the creative economy; arts-based programs and services provided in collaboration with multiple LA County departments that support children, youth, and families; and a prioritization of historically underserved populations. It is intended as both an aspirational policy statement and a roadmap for practitioners and leaders to advance youth development over the next decade.
The new Blueprint’s goals are to:
- Develop systems and infrastructure that expand and sustain arts education for all young people, in all schools, and in all communities.
- Build and strengthen partnerships and collaborations to create, expand, and leverage resources for arts education.
- Increase public awareness about the importance of arts education and mobilize stakeholders to advocate for robust implementation.
Read the Blueprint
Nearly 20 years ago, the Board of Supervisors launched a countywide initiative to restore the arts in public education. That initiative, now known as the Arts Ed Collective, is coordinated by the LA County Department of Arts and Culture. The coalition currently includes over 150 public and private partners, including the Los Angeles County Office of Education, 74 of the 81 LA County school districts, arts organizations, grantees, philanthropy, and county agencies including departments of Mental Health, Probation, Parks and Recreation, the offices of Child Protection, Youth Diversion and Development, and more.
In 2018, the Board of Supervisors identified a need for an updated regional plan for arts education that reflects the current priorities and educational landscape of LA County. The development process for the new plan involved input from more than 600 stakeholders during the spring and summer of 2019. Arts and Culture staff travelled across the county, speaking to residents in Lancaster, Santa Clarita, Pomona, Santa Monica, and six other neighborhoods in a series of community forums. Residents engaged included youth, parents, artists, and community members—as well as representatives from schools, arts organizations, local businesses, creative industries, workforce development, social services, and local government.