Archived Information

Chicago Public Schools Art Exhibit Opens at U.S. Department of Education in Washington

Featured ribbon-cutting with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and musical performances by CPS students studying with the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz

Contact:  
David Thomas, , (202) 401-1576 (Washington)
Julie Ewart , (312) 730-1703 (Chicago)


U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan acknowledged Chicago Public School (CPS) students at an exhibit opening of their artwork hosted in the Department’s auditorium with a ribbon-cutting ceremony this morning. He was joined by CPS Director of Humanities Paul Whitsitt and several other CPS administrators and teachers, as well as 16 Chicago high school students visiting Washington D.C. for the event today.

One-hundred pieces of artwork from CPS students will be displayed at the Department through April 16. They were selected in the CPS All-City Art Exhibition, an annual juried exhibit that honors outstanding achievement in the visual arts by high school students participating in district-wide art classes. The opening event also featured a musical performance by five CPS students who are studying with the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, which also sponsored the young performers’ trip to Washington.

Secretary Duncan spoke about the importance of the arts as part of a well-rounded curriculum for all students, which is a key component of the President’s blueprint for the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

“The arts, perhaps more than any other subject, prepare young people with creativity and innovative thinking,” said Duncan.

Now in its seventh year, the U.S. Department of Education’s Student Art Exhibit Program features art produced by students in U.S. and international schools. The program provides students and teachers an opportunity to display creative work from the classroom in a highly public space to honor the work as an effective path to learning. Exhibits from school districts, schools and non-profit organizations have been included.

Organizations, school districts and individual schools approach the Department to request exhibits of their students’ work in the gallery space, which is located on the main floor of the U.S. Department of Education’s headquarters. The CPS exhibit was inspired by a visit of 7th aU.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan acknowledged Chicago Public School (CPS) students at an exhibit opening of their artwork hosted in the Department’s auditorium with a ribbon-cutting ceremony this morning. He was joined by CPS Director of Humanities Paul Whitsitt and several other CPS administrators and teachers, as well as 16 Chicago high school students visiting Washington D.C. for the event today.

One-hundred pieces of artwork from CPS students will be displayed at the Department through April 16. They were selected in the CPS All-City Art Exhibition, an annual juried exhibit that honors outstanding achievement in the visual arts by high school students participating in district-wide art classes. The opening event also featured a musical performance by five CPS students who are studying with the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, which also sponsored the young performers’ trip to Washington.

Secretary Duncan spoke about the importance of the arts as part of a well-rounded curriculum for all students, which is a key component of the President’s blueprint for the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

“The arts, perhaps more than any other subject, prepare young people with creativity and innovative thinking,” said Duncan.

Now in its seventh year, the U.S. Department of Education’s Student Art Exhibit Program features art produced by students in U.S. and international schools. The program provides students and teachers an opportunity to display creative work from the classroom in a highly public space to honor the work as an effective path to learning. Exhibits from school districts, schools and non-profit organizations have been included.

Organizations, school districts and individual schools approach the Department to request exhibits of their students’ work in the gallery space, which is located on the main floor of the U.S. Department of Education’s headquarters. The CPS exhibit was inspired by a visit of 7th and 8th grade students from Chicago’s Bateman Elementary School to the Department in April, 2009. After admiring the student artwork on display, Bateman administrators asked ED’s Jacquelyn Zimmermann, director of the Student Art Exhibit Program, about the exhibit request process. Their efforts ultimately led to today’s event.

“Before we opened this gallery in 2004, we really had nothing visual here to showcase what’s going on in American schools,” said Zimmermann. “The response that we’ve received from our student exhibitors and their schools, as well as visitors to the building has been spectacular.”

To schedule a visit to the exhibits and learn more about exhibiting opportunities, contact Jacquelyn Zimmermann at Jacquelyn.Zimmermann@ed.gov, or at 202-401-0762.