The Kennedy Center Launches a National Month-Long Campaign For Arts Education

By Afton Wooten

The Kennedy Center, in partnership with AMC Theatres, has released a public service announcement featuring Academy Award®–winning actor, singer, and dancer Ariana DeBose promoting arts education and encourages public to “thank an art teacher.”

Coinciding with the National Arts in Education week (Sept. 10–16), the campaign will be shown at AMC Theatre locations across the country from Aug. 25 through Oct. 5. Other public figures participating are Fortas Chamber Music Concerts’ Artistic Director Jennifer Koh, choreographer of several classical works  Hope Boykin, surgeon, neuroscientist, and musician Dr. Charles Limb, seven-time NBA All-Star Grant Hill, and more.

Studies by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences point to the impact of exposure to arts education as it relates to a student’s academic success across all disciplines; and discusses equity and access to consistent arts education which remains a challenge in the United States. With this, the Kennedy Center aims to bring further awareness to the importance of arts education and its vital role throughout society.

“As the National Cultural Center, part of the Kennedy Center’s calling is to advocate for arts teachers and support the work they do to foster the next generation of not only artists, but leaders and engaged citizens,” said Deborah F. Rutter, President of the Kennedy Center. “Arts teachers have the unique ability to open our eyes in ways others can’t. They teach lessons that go far beyond the classroom, stage, or office. I am forever indebted to the influential arts teachers in my life, who all opened a part of the world that I didn’t know existed. As we celebrate arts educators everywhere, the Center is thrilled to be partnering with AMC Theatres with the support of the ever talented Ariana DeBose to encourage others to share stories of an educator who impacted them and to say thank you.”