The arts are becoming more and more recognized as an essential part of growing up, especially as an outlet for children to express themselves. In West Palm Beach, Florida, the Center for Creative Education has taken it upon themselves to offer art education to all.
Who are they?
The Center of Creative Education was started in the early 1990s by leaders of the Cultural Council of Palm Beach in response to the growing trend of arts programs being cut from schools to balance their budgets. After funding a study to figure out how to fill the void being left in place of art education, the Center of Creative Education was started with the mission to train teachers on how to incorporate the arts into how they teach their classes. In the more than twenty years since its founding, the Center has partnered with schools across Palm Beach County both in adding the arts to their classrooms or in after-school activities.
What’s offered at the Center itself?
With an art gallery, a digital theater, a recording studio, a computer lab, and art studios, the Center offers something for everyone. Thanks to the combination of grant funding from the state of Florida and the generosity of donors, the Center of Creative Education is able to sponsor on after-school programs and support art exhibitions, performances, and educational seminars for their students.
How do the Center’s programs help?
A majority of the students that the Center of Creative Education helps live in economically or socially challenging environments and are considered “at-risk” for educational failure. By offering an education surrounded by the arts, the Center aims to encourage both academic and personal success. As the Center’s website says, “working together on these art-based projects encourages exploration, inventiveness, team building and cooperation, and changes the way they think about themselves and about school.”
Art education is just as important as STEM subjects—without the arts, the world would be devoid of music, movies, books, theater, and more. With organizations like the Center for Creative Education, we can ensure that the arts aren’t entirely lost.