AIE Advocacy and Research

Basic education that includes the arts is mandatory in Washington State. All students are required to receive meaningful arts instruction as part of their lessons during the regular school day. Students graduating after 2019 are required to have arts education in order to graduate. You can read more about Washington State arts education laws here.

National Arts Standards

At the federal level, arts are core academic subject for K-12 education. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) maintains the arts as a core academic subject.

Washington State Arts Standards and Framework

The K-12 Arts Learning Standards include five disciplines: dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts. These standards include the National Core Arts Standards, and are arranged by four artistic processes:

  1. Creating
  2. Performing/Presenting/Producing
  3. Responding
  4. Connecting

Arts Curricula

Since 2008, OSPI has provided performance assessments for the arts. These assessments can be used by classroom teachers to gauge student understanding of dance, music, theatre, and visual arts.

May is recognized as Arts Education month in Washington State. Arts education advocates work to increase public awareness of the importance of meaningful arts education for all students. ArtsWA invites communities, students, families, schools, and organizations in the state to make local proclamations in support of arts learning.


The Governor’s Proclamation  highlights supports schools and communities efforts to:

  • Celebrate local arts education achievements.
  • Plan future work to ensure all Washington students receive arts education.
  • Coordinate efforts to recognize the value of arts education.

To learn how your community can get involved in Arts Education Month, visit ArtsEd Washington. There you will find a complete Arts Education Month toolkit.

K-12 Arts Education: Every Student, Every School, Every Year (2009)

This report describes the quality of public education is Washington State. It is based on a survey of K-12 principals from 37 of 39 Washington counties (2007-2008).

Action Agendas and Markers of Quality

This excerpt from K-12 Arts Education: Every Student, Every School Every Year, contains suggestions and practices for providing consistent arts learning opportunities for all students.

The State of K-12 Arts Education in Washington State (2008-2009)

This report provides measurable data on the length and quality of student learning in the arts.

Arts for Every Student (2004-2006)

This  report details ArtsWA’s efforts to collect data on the frequency and strength of arts instruction in K-12 schools.


Regional Reports

King County Arts Education Data Dashboard (2018)

This pilot project between the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) and 4Culture provides arts education data for King County high schools.

King County School Districts: Study on Arts Education Infrastructure and Administrative Perspectives (2015)

Cornerstones of Creative Capacity (C3) is a project designed by ArtsEd Washington. It identifies the chief components needed to maintain arts education within school districts.

Career Strategies for Career Connected Learning: Youth Voice in the Media Classroom (2018)

This report by the Creative Advantage includes data analysis and recommendations for creative strategies in career connected learning.


National Reports

ArtScan at a Glance (2019)

This summary is updated each year to reflect legislative changes affecting the arts in education. It includes policies for all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia.

The Status of Arts Standards Revision in the United States since 2014 (2019)

This report by the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards addresses the status of state arts standards revision and outlines steps to adoption.

ESSA: Mapping Opportunities for the Arts (2019)

This report addresses the increased flexibility that ESSA provides to ensure that all students experience a well-rounded education that includes the arts.

Preparing Educators and School Leaders for Effective Arts Integration (2018)

This Education Trends report explores successful practices for arts integration

The Arts and Dropout Prevention: The Power of Art to Engage (2017)

This National Dropout Prevention Center/Network White Paper provides research on the value of arts education to prevent dropouts.

Turnaround Arts Initiative – Summary of Key Findings (2014)
The report provides a analysis of outcomes in a pilot cohort of schools participating in arts integration.

The Arts and Achievement in At-Risk Youth: Findings from Four Longitudinal Studies (2012)
The study focuses on the effects of arts engagement on youth from low-income backgrounds.

Arts Education in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools 1999-2000 and 2009-10

This report is on the availability of arts education programs in public K-12 schools by discipline (music, visual arts, dance, and theatre).

Roles of Certified Arts Educators, Certified Non-Arts Educators, & Providers of Supplemental Arts Instruction (2012)
This paper outlines the roles of partners who are responsible for providing system-wide, sustainable K-12 arts education for all students.

Washington State Arts Advocacy Organizations

Inspire Washington

Inspire Washington increases public access to arts, heritage, and science. They support advocacy, resource development, education, and coalition building. Formed in 2019, Inspire Washington is a merger of the Washington State Arts Alliance and Cultural Access Washington.

ArtsEd Washington

ArtsEd Washington is the state’s arts advocacy organization. They help schools and school districts develop, implement, and sustain great arts education. ArtsEd Washington aims to educate parents, educators, communities, and policymakers about inequities in arts learning.

National Arts Advocacy Organizations

Americans for the Arts

Americans for the Arts (AFTA) is a nonprofit organization. Their focus is to advance the arts in the United States. AFTA works to connect leaders from the arts, communities, and businesses, to ensure that every American has access to the arts.

National Assembly of State Arts Agencies

The National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA) is a professional association of the nation’s 56 state and jurisdictional arts agencies. NASAA is a national, not-for-profit, nonpartisan organization that champions public support for the arts in America.

National Arts Education Partnership

The Arts Education Partnership (AEP) is the nation’s leading forum for advancing arts education research and policy.