The Missouri Arts Council has long recognized the value of a strong arts education, and the corresponding impact on the state: better educated students, a more effective workforce, and economically vital communities.
The Missouri Alliance for Arts Education, with the assistance of the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the support of the Missouri Arts Council, has created two studies that analyze the relationships in Missouri school districts between student participation in fine arts courses (music, visual art, theater/drama, and dance) and attendance and graduation rates, disciplinary infractions, and statewide tests in language arts and mathematics in the Missouri Assessment Program (MAP). The first study was published in 2010: Arts Education Makes a Difference in Missouri Schools. The follow-up was published in 2015: Arts Education STILL Makes a Difference in Missouri Schools.
You can download the complete studies as 32-page PDFS and the key findings in two-page summaries.
The reports reflect our unequivocal belief: every child benefits from art in their education.
Our partnership with the Missouri Alliance for Arts Education in funding this study is a key part of understanding the public value of the arts in our society. Appreciating and supporting the arts in general benefits from graduating students with necessary critical and creative skills. We know that adults that have encountered the arts as youth are more likely to engage with the arts as adults. Pablo Picasso recognized the challenge when he said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”
These reports underscore, once again, the unique and complex benefits of the arts.