Welcome

Welcome to the Arts Education Partnership. AEP is a national network of organizations dedicated to advancing the arts in education through research, policy and practice. AEP’s vison is that every student in America succeeds in school, work and life as a result of a high-quality education in and through the arts.

In 2015, the National Endowment for the Arts and the U.S. Department of Education selected Education Commission of the States to serve as the new host organization for AEP. AEP benefits from the organization’s exemplary reach to a range of education stakeholders across the nation. We build on AEP’s more than 20-year legacy by providing partner organizations and the arts education community with the knowledge, tools and resources they need to elevate the narrative toward realizing our collective goals for all children to have access to the arts as part of their education.

Research continues to demonstrate that the arts make a difference in not only improving academic performance and nurturing creativity, but also in fostering personal development. AEP is counting on the arts and education community to engage, take action and share promising practices for advancing student success though the arts.

Passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act in December 2015 brought renewed opportunity to highlight the importance of the arts as part of a child’s well-rounded education. ESSA also brings great possibilities to an ongoing effort to leverage success stories across arts disciplines on how the arts contribute to academic achievement, and how states, districts and schools put the arts into action.

I encourage you to download The Arts Leading the Way to Student Success: A 2020 Action Agenda for Advancing the Arts in Education. This action agenda serves as the blueprint for the collective work of the partnership. The 2020 Action Agenda identifies four priority areas in which arts and education leaders can position their work:

  • Raise Student Achievement and Success.
  • Support Effective Educators and School Leaders.
  • Transform the Teaching and Learning Environment.
  • Build Leadership Capacity and Knowledge.

I also invite you to explore the many resources currently available on the AEP website, such as the ESSA and the Arts webpage, a compilation of current arts and education materials from the field and across the partnership; ArtScan, a 50-state database of arts education policies; and ArtsEdSearch, a national clearinghouse of research on the impact of arts education for both students and educators. Visit the Publications webpage, where you will find a variety of resources on arts in education, all of which can be downloaded at no cost. Finally, sign up to receive the ArtsEd Digest for updates on AEP meetings, new resources and information from AEP partner organizations. Finally, we welcome the opportunity for you to connect with us, share your arts education endeavors and let us know how we all might benefit from one another’s meaningful work.

With warm regard,

Jane R. Best, Ph.D.
Director, Arts Education Partnership