U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan released the following statement today regarding results of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Arts 2008 assessment of Music and Visual Arts at Grade 8:
These results are important for several reasons. First, they remind us that the arts are a core academic subject and part of a complete education for all students. The arts are also important to American students gaining the 21st century skills they will need to succeed in higher education and the global marketplace – skills that increasingly demand creativity, perseverance, and problem solving combined with performing well as part of a team.
The results also remind us that learning in the arts can and should be rigorous and based on high standards, and that it can be evaluated objectively, using well-designed measures.
This Arts Report Card should challenge all of us to make K-12 arts programs more available to America’s children and youth. Such programs not only engage students’ creativity and academic commitment today, but they uniquely equip them for future success and fulfillment. We can and should do better for America’s students.