September/October California County Superintendents CISC Arts Subcommittee Report – Regional Highlights


September/October 2022



Curriculum and Instruction (CISC) Arts Subcommittee

Jeanette Spencer, Chair
Senior Advisor for District Support & Educational Leadership, Butte COE

California County Superintendents Arts Initiative

Letty Kraus, Director

California Department of Education (CDE)

Allison Frenzel, Education Programs Consultant

The California Arts Project (TCAP)

Kristine Alexander, Executive Director

REGION 1 Arts Lead
Stacy Young, Humboldt COE
REGION 2 Arts Lead
Jennifer Spangler, Butte COE

REGION 3 Arts Lead
Dr. L. Steven Winlock
, Sacramento COE

REGION 4 Arts Lead
Bernie Phelan, Alameda COE

REGION 5 Arts Lead
Sofia Fojas, Santa Clara COE

REGION 6 Arts Lead
Amy Bultena, Stanislaus COE

REGION 7 Arts Co-Lead
Aaron Bryan
, Fresno CSS

REGION 7 Arts Co-Lead
Kate Stover, Tulare COE

REGION 8 Arts Co-Lead
Brett Taylor, Ventura COE

REGION 8 Arts Co-Lead
Lisa Salas Brown, Ventura COE
REGION 9 Arts Lead
Pauline Crooks, San Diego COE
REGION 10 Arts Lead
Louisa Higgins, Riverside COE

REGION 11 Arts Lead
Jeannine Flores, Los Angeles COE

California County Superintendents Arts Initiative Update

Directors Report: Prop 28

Since the adoption of the California Arts Education Framework for Public Schools Transitional Kindergarten Through Grades Twelve in 2020, the California County Superintendents Arts Initiative has been collaborating with The California Arts Project and the California Department of Education to do a virtual rollout and create a suite of resources to assist LEAs with standards and framework implementation. This collaboration continues in the 2022–23 school year. Meanwhile, arts education has recently received a huge boost with the legislature-passed Arts, Music, and Instructional Materials Discretionary Block Grant. Even more exciting, California voters passed measure 28 which adds The Arts and Music in Schools Funding Guarantee and Accountability Act to the California Education Code. The Arts and Music in Schools Funding Guarantee and Accountability Act helps ensure that the recently updated California Arts Standards and the guidance in the Arts Education Framework will be fully implemented in California’s schools and that the key values embedded in the standards and framework—equitable access to arts education for all students—can become a reality.


Regional Highlights

Submitted by the Regional Arts Leads of the CISC/Arts Subcommittee


Humboldt County Office of Education

Stacy Young, Regional County Arts Lead

Humboldt County Office of Education

Humboldt County Office of Education has completed the Fall training for ArtSEL and is working in classrooms in Instructional coaching cycles and with guest Teaching Artists on arts skills, reading art, and social emotional learning. HCOE is also ramping up its Schools to Dance, Theatre, and Symphony programs. High school dance students will be attending Hip-Hop performance and Q&A at Cal Poly Humboldt with the Versa-Style Dance Company. Theatre students are seeing local theatre programming, and music students have opportunities for classes with International Guitarists.  Planning is underway for students events of the Youth Arts Festival and All County Music Festival in March.

Mendocino County Office of Education

Mendocino County Office of Education kicked off its annual partnership with The Arts Council of Mendocino to fund the Get Arts in Schools Grant (GASP). There have already been several submissions for the grant to infuse arts into classrooms and help support local artists. MCOE is also partnering with Focus 5 to provide theatre based SEL workshops for teachers to use cooperative theatre challenges to improve classroom culture.


Butte County Office of Education

Jennifer Spangler, Regional County Arts Lead

Butte County Office of Education

Butte County Office of Education Receives ARTS Grant for Teaching Artists in the Schools

Through a partnership with the Butte County Friends of the Arts, BCOE will receive funds from the California Arts Council (CAC) to offer free Teaching Artist residencies at four Oroville area schools. Schools were selected based on their participation in the Ensuring the Arts for Any Given Child initiative and because they are designated Title 1 schools and have larger populations of English Language Learners. Among the five teaching artists who will provide residencies, one is fluent in Spanish and one is a fluent Hmong language speaker. The CAC grant will support the free residencies over a two year period starting in January 2023.


Sacramento County Office of Education

Dr. L. Steven Winlock, Regional Arts Lead

Sacramento County Office of Education

Sacramento County Office of Education Arts Community of Practice

The SCOE Arts Community of Practice met on October 20, 2022, with District Art Leads and Sacramento Art Organizations. All in attendance gave updates on their respective art education programs in schools, art districts, and art organizations. The purpose of the Arts COP is to create partnerships between art districts and art organizations. Below are items that were discussed during this meeting.

  • Allison Cagley (Friends of Sacramento Arts) shared information about Prop 28. Prop 28 benefits arts and music education in K-12 public schools, providing annual funding to hire art, music, or drama teachers. More teachers would allow students an outlet to express themselves and help overcome the mental health challenges brought on by the pandemic.
  • Jasmin Martinez (SCOE) shared program updates for Any Given Child/Sacramento Healthy HeART and Mind.
  • Sacramento Music Census
  • Discover Your Inner Artist – Davis Arts Center

October 20, 2022 – Zoom Meeting Recording
Passcode: t4JAZ40@

*Remaining Meeting Dates 2022-23: 11/17/22, 1/19/23, 2/16/23, 3/16/23, 4/20/23, 5/18/23, 6/15/23

The SCOE Arts Community of Practice (COP) meets monthly throughout the year. The Arts COP focuses on joint professional development, such as Art Advocacy and professional development for teachers and teaching artists. The Arts COP invites members of the Art Community that can enlighten the COP members on the work that is being done in the Sacramento area around art education.

County Art Leads Community of Practice in Region 3 is meeting monthly. The purpose of this COP is to identify the art education happening in schools within each of the counties located in Region 3. The County Art Leads review areas where they can support schools in the implementation of art education and professional development and make suggestions to further support their schools in implementing art education.


Alameda County Office of Education

Bernie Phelan, Regional Arts Lead

Alameda County Office of Education

Trauma Informed Healing Through the Arts

A Four-Part Series for Alameda County Educators

On September 23rd, 2022 ACOE hosted this kick-off, in person event at the Chabot Space and Science Center.  Twenty-four participants represented all grade levels, social workers, teachers, special education, and district staff.  Together they dedicated a full day of learning to key elements, approaches, and practical guidelines for therapeutic art education with students who have experienced adverse childhood experiences and trauma. Dr. McFarland facilitated the event and was a wealth of knowledge regarding not only applicable resources, but provided great insight to the field of art therapy as well.

Currently we are in the middle of 3 follow up virtual sessions to take a deeper dive into artmaking strategies.

Trades Week

A Three-Part Series for Alameda County students 

The Alameda County Office of Education, in collaboration with Earn & Learn, invites you to enjoy our career exploration sessions focused on Skilled Trades and Manufacturing!

These three, one-hour virtual sessions will shed light on the opportunities in a variety of industries for your learners; as well as showcase opportunities to train and learn in your area. Hear from professionals about their journeys; see their work, and understand more about the impact of Trades and Manufacturing on our everyday lives and communities. To enhance the virtual experience of Trades Week, we are employing the use of a special tool called Matterport that creates a 3D scan of physical environments. These scans will be paired with a step-by-step virtual tour of the panelist’s facilities where students will be able to interact with and see where they work in a unique 3D experience. 

Trades Week Flyer

Media Producer Fellowship:  Futures We Dream

Paid Internship Opportunity

Alameda County Office of Education and Arts2Work are seeking 10 creative students looking to explore storytelling and media arts as a career. In this Fellowship, students will create their own 1-2 minute short videos around the theme of Futures We Dream, inspired by the Smithsonian FUTURES exhibition currently on view in Washington, DC.

Internship Flyer

Arts as Life! – February 1st 2023

Arts Institute

Arts as Life! is open to all K-12 teachers, administration, staff, and counselors, and is produced in partnership with San Mateo County Office of Education, Alameda County Office of Education, Stanford Live, Young Audiences of Northern California, San Mateo County Office of Arts and Culture, Santa Clara County Office of Education, Riverside Office of Education, and KQED.

This day-long, immersive experience will include many dynamic presenters, a rockstar line-up for the keynote, student performances, AND MORE!

We are excited to bring teachers a new model of professional development that includes their students.  We recognize that finding a substitute teacher is almost impossible, and one of the many themes of the conference is “Student Voice,” so why not invite students? Save the Date! And bring your class!

Alameda County Community History and Arts Project

The Alameda County Community History Project aims to engage students in the exploration of best practices to engage as community historians. They begin their exploration by focusing on the creation of oral histories that incorporate photo essays, cooking, music, and personal artifacts.

Through multiple sessions, teachers will build a toolkit for community asset mapping including the ways public art has been integrated into the community design. The teacher community will then participate in the Black Liberation Walking Tour that focuses on the architecture, urban design, and public artwork in West Oakland’s Hoover Foster neighborhood. The creators of the tour will spend an hour debriefing with participants how they shaped this kind of community project.

Teachers will also be able to select several in person workshops including participation in the Ohlone café (cultural learnings through the culinary arts) and a tour of the Spanish colonial Peralta House. The last sessions are focused on teaching tools to integrate the student historical voices with experts in the field so that students can publish their findings which may be in the form of photo essays, their own mural expression, a web site design, or an artifact for a time capsule. Finally, teachers will spend a planning session to think about how to integrate all of the material into their curriculum throughout the upcoming school year.

We are at capacity for sign-ups and will start November 10th !


Santa Clara County Office of Education

Sofia Fojas, Regional Arts Lead

Santa Clara County Office of Education

By Sofia Fojas, Arts Coordinator  

Artspiration News

Its been a busy time for arts learning in Santa Clara County!

Along with our on-going Region 5 Arts Education Community of Practice, we also shared our program at the Oak Grove Professional Learning for Teachers under the auspices of the Inclusion Collaborative and they wanted more arts sessions!

Hewlett Education Policy and Advocacy Grantee Convening

On September 28-29, Sofia Fojas and Sharon Gonzales attended the annual Hewlett Education Policy and Advocacy Grantee Convening with a list of arts organizations from around the state and the nation:  CreateCA, Alameda and Fresno County Offices of Education, California County Superintendents Arts Initiative, Arts for LA, Arts Alliance of the Bay Area, the National Guild for Arts Education, the Teaching Artist Guild, to name just a few. Yours truly did play the violin! The sessions were beautifully facilitated by Mariah Rankine Landers and Jessa Brie Moreno of Studio Pathways.

The ArtsEdConnect Educator Grant Committee awarded 93 grants to teachers who are bringing arts activities to their classrooms representing 26 districts. The Arts are essential!

Santa Cruz County Office of Education

By Audrey Sirota, Visual & Performing Arts Coordinator 
For more information on items found in this section, please contact Audrey Sirota, Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator. 831.466.5827

Poetry Out Loud

We are invested in our Initiative highlighting Student Leadership & Voice. To support this effort, we are recruiting students for the following events. Mark your calendars for our countywide Poetry Out Loud event (flyer below.)

STUDENT OPPORTUNITY: Please Register at this Link: Poetry Out Loud Club Registration


Youth Artists Taking Action Student Group


We are deeply committed to supporting student leadership and voice!

Audience: High School Students

Please register using this link: Youth Artists Taking Action Application

FashionTeens: A Program for Social and Environmental Activists


Audience: Middle and High School Students

Please complete application at:  FashionTeens Application

The Santa Cruz Symphony, Carnegie Hall, and the Santa Cruz COE bring you:

Link Up: The Orchestra Sings

Audience: 4-5th Grade Teachers, Teaching Artists, Administrators & Educational Leaders

Please contact Audrey at to register your school.

Steam Expo

 Including the Invention Convention and FashionTeens: An environmental and socially conscious event!


MARCH 11, 2023: 2:00 SHOWCASE

Arts Education Community of Practice

Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, San Benito & Monterey County Offices of Education are co-hosting this Arts Education Community of Practice. Join us for a region-wide sharing of ideas and inspirations!


Audience: Teachers, Teaching Artists, Administrators

Please register using this link: Arts Education Community of Practice

San Benito County Office of Education

Arts Education Community of Practice

San Benito County has teamed up with our Region V Arts Education Community of Practice–and we are  growing! We are excited to see participants from each regional county at our monthly workshops sharing and collaborating to support a high quality equitable arts education for all students.

San Benito County Arts Council has expanded their 2022-2023 Arts in Education Program! They currently are serving over 5,000 students with 185 weekly art classes taught by local teaching artists.

Save the Dates!

The SBCOE and it’s partners are reconvening from January through May to discuss our goals and actions for phase 2 of our County Strategic Arts Plan. We will kick off a series of meetings to consider the impact of increased state and federal arts funding for our LEAs.


Stanislaus County Office of Education

Amy Bultena, Regional Arts Lead

Stanislaus County Office of Education

  • Stanislaus COE is having three Arts Education Leadership Team Meetings
  • Stanislaus COE sends a monthly arts newsletter
  • Stanislaus COE will be having a Art of the Educator Art Show
  • Stanislaus COE will be hosting a Monarch Madness Art Show
  • Stanislaus COE is working with Salida Union School District on Intentional Art Planning Development
  • Stanislaus COE is having Youth Poet Laureate program development meetings.
  • Stanislaus COE is offering the following workshops
    • Teaching Arts in Connection with History Social Science x 2
    • Social Emotional Learning and the Arts
    • Sketchnotes
    • Art for Wellness x 4
    • Winter Wonderland Arts Workshop
    • SEL and Visual Art Module Workshop x 4
    • UDL and the Arts
    • SEL for Visual Arts Teachers Workshop
    • Arts Standards and Framework for Music and Visual Art Teachers
    • Transitional Kindergarten and Arts Integration Workshop
    • Sustainable Architecture through Sculpture and 3D TinkerCAD



Tulare County Office of Education & Fresno County Superintendent of Schools

Kate Stover & Aaron Bryan, Regional Arts Co-Leads

Fresno County Office of Education

Fresno Fair Jr. Exhibition Art Awards

Each year middle school and high school students from across Fresno County submit artwork for the Big Fresno Fair’s Jr. Exhibit Art Awards. And every year, the Fresno County Superintendent of Schools, in partnership with the Fresno Fair, honors these student-artists providing cash awards for the Best of Show winners in each of 11 categories. In all, 18 middle school and high school artists and their teachers were honored at this year’s event, Thursday, October 6 in the Jr. Exhibits building at the fairgrounds. View photos from the event at

Central Valley Theatre Educators Network (CVTEN)

The Fresno County Superintendent of Schools is pleased to announce the launch of the CVTEN, a monthly opportunity for theatre teachers from across the valley to gather, learn, and share with each other. This exciting new adventure will be both engaging and informative, and a chance to meet others throughout the area working in the arts. For more information, contact Joel Abels, FCSS Arts Education Content Specialist (

Kings County Office of Education

Check out the November edition of the Kings County Arts in Action for more of the amazing arts taking place in schools throughout Kings County (

Madera County Office of Education


Mariposa County Office of Education


Merced County County Office of Education


Tulare County County Office of Education

Arts and SEL Workshop

Thirty Tulare County arts educators, counselors, social workers, and school psychologists gathered at the TCOE Doe Avenue Complex on October 19 for a full-day of learning, collaboration, and mindfulness. The group attended TCOE’s Arts and SEL workshop and discovered easy strategies for connecting the arts to their classrooms and campus spaces. This full day of professional learning was provided to educators as part of The QUAIL Project (QUality Arts Instruction and Learning) a five year program funded by the US Department of Education’s Assistance for Arts Education grant program. The QUAIL Project is aimed at providing high-quality standards-aligned arts education professional learning and instructional resources to Tulare County educators.

Poetry Live!

The Tulare County Office of Education and the Arts Consortium (Tulare County’s Arts Council) are proud to present Poetry Live! This program is a new series of events that offers students in grades 6-12 the opportunity to not only recite poems written by great poets, but to write and recite their own original works as well. Poetry Live will feature three events that students can choose to participate in: Poetry Out Loud, Poetry Out Loud Junior and Poet’s Own Voice.

Poetry Out Loud is a national event for high school students (grades 9-12) and is sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation. Students participating in this event will choose three pieces from the Poetry Out Loud archive to recite in front of a live audience. Participating schools will hold their own competition in December or early January. They will crown their school champion who will move on to the Tulare County Poetry Out Loud event and compete for the county title.

New this year, the Poetry Out Loud experience is being offered to middle school students (grades 6-8) in the Poetry Out Loud Junior event. Students participating in this event will choose three pieces from the Poetry Foundation archive of poems to recite in front of a live audience. Participating schools will hold their own competition in December or early January and send their school champion to county competition, where a student will be crowned the county champion.

The final event in the Poetry Live family is Poet’s Own Voice. This event is open to middle school and high school students (grades 6-12). There are two ways to participate. The first is a written event in which students submit five original works. Judges will determine the top piece from each student, as well as rank all pieces to determine the top three poems overall. In the showcase portion of the event, students can choose to recite their top original work in front of an audience. From the showcase event, the first-ever Tulare County Youth Poet Laureate will be crowned.

For more information on Poetry Live visit:


Ventura County Office of Education

Lisa Salas Brown & Brett Taylor, Regional Arts Co-Leads

Ventura County Office of Education

The Visual and Performing Arts Network is back. Brett Taylor has surveyed each district and charter to determine the lead representative. Brett is working with the local arts museums and performing arts centers to be guest members of the local network.  The first meeting will be held before the Thanksgiving Holiday.  The State and Federal VCOE Team has also shared the advocacy opportunities to support the Arts with the block grant.  Tools and resources have been shared with all district and charter leads aligned to accountability and instructional services. Our VCOE Student Competition in partnership with the Educational Services Branch created a LOGO contest for our student competition events. This information went out to all of our district and charter partners in both English and Spanish.

Ventura County is offering upcoming professional learning events

Arts Partner – Museum of Ventura County and the Agriculture Museum in Santa Paula! Ivor Davis, November 3rd: Joe Sohm joins host Ivor Davis for a discussion of his work as one of the nation’s preeminent political photographers. De Colores Music & Art Festival, November 12: Come enjoy this free community event featuring musical performances, poetry readings, and the opening of a brand new exhibit. A Year Without You Opening Reception, November 19: This exhibition of paintings by artist Julie Dahl-Nicolle, displayed in the MVC Pavilion, will bring acceptance and understanding to our loss all while giving us hope & joy for the future ahead. Learn more:

Cal State University Channel Islands (CSUCI) Choir – MARK YOUR CALENDAR! This will be an awesome after-Thanksgiving concert featuring the combined voices of the CSUCI University Chorus & our local high school, Santa Paula HS Concert Choir , celebrating the voices of our great community!  A Cultural Celebration of Choral Music – To find out more

Santa Barbara County Office of Education

Kai Tepper met with Lisa and James (VCOE) to discuss partnership opportunities for the 2022-23 school year. Zoom virtual opportunities and also some regional partnership with long standing partners from Children’s Creative Project. Take a moment to view the new interview by Kai – Creativity at the Core: Take Five with Dr. Susan Salcido, Superintendent, “Arts for all of our children”. This wonderful video is part of the newly refreshed Creativity at the Core Module 12, Leadership in Arts Education.

Kern County Office of Education

Offers various Visual and Performing Arts Events. For more information see booklet – 2022-23 Kern County Superintendent of Schools. Jamie Viveros has been in contact via email, we are working on a time when all can meet via Zoom or in-person.  Jamie integrates the arts in STEAM work as a Science Coordinator for the county

Upcoming Professional Learning Event Co-sponsored by Kern County Superintendent of Schools

Nutcracker Concerts -December 8th and 9th – The Civic Dance Center, in partnership with the Kern County Superintendent of Schools office, annually presents its Nutcracker Young People’s Concerts for the youth of our community. The concerts are held at Mechanics Bank Convention Center at 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m., with each performance lasting 45 minutes. Contact Erica Ueberroth with the Civic Dance Center at (661) 364-8504 or 

San Luis Obispo County Office of Education

Brent Moser has retired and we are currently waiting for a contact person at San Luis Obispo County Office of Education. The hope is that Brett will continue as a support provider part-time for the SLOECOE Arts Initiative.


San Diego County Office of Education

Pauline Crooks, Regional Arts Lead

Imperial County Office of Education (ICOE)


Orange County Department of Education (OCDE)

Congratulations to IUSD instrumental and music theory teacher, Ben Case who was named one of five California Teachers of the Year!

Anaheim Elementary School District (AESD)

On Wednesday, October 5, 2022, AESD was the first district to host an Orange County Music and Arts Administrators (OCMAA) event for the 2022-23 school year. Their Superintendent, Dr. Christopher Downing, welcomed attendees and discussed their commitment to promoting a sense of belonging through arts education. Music Curriculum Specialist Mark Anderson discussed the strategic steps being taken as well as community partnerships to support full access to music education to all students including the district’s growing Mariachi music program. Visual Arts & History-Social Science TOSA Laura Houston gave an overview of the district’s community team, their plan and timeline for implementing Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Teaching in Visual Arts. She also gave some great examples of asset-based pedagogies in Visual Art that support students to feel a sense of inclusion. Images from this wonderful morning can be viewed here. Thank you AESD!

San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE)

Arts Education Twitter Chat

Join @PCrooks_VAPA, @VAPAJeannine,and arts education experts from across the state for a Twitter Chat every Wednesday from 4:00 to 4:30 p.m. We are growing a statewide virtual professional learning community for educators, artists, and others passionate about arts education. Let’s chat about the new state arts standards and framework, best practices, and the great things happening in your classes. Whether you’ve never participated in a Twitter chat before or are an expert, you can access the questions and learn how to join the conversation at the San Diego County Office of Education Visual and Performing Arts web page.   

Arts Empower San Diego Mega Conference

The annual Arts Empower San Diego Mega Conference returned in September 2022 as an opportunity for educators, artists, and leaders to network and learn about effective, relevant, and engaging student learning practices. The event kicked off September 14 with a virtual welcome, keynote from Rafael Lopez, and a learning session. The event began virtually in the morning and shifted to in-person events at regional hubs in the late afternoon and evening. Thank you to our hosts at Mesa College, Palomar College, and Southwestern College. The arts matter, and this annual gathering was a reminder to arts educators of their importance to our school systems and our students’ current and future wellbeing. Please visit the new Arts Empower website to learn more, and if you’re on Twitter, please connect with @ArtsEmpowerSD and use #ArtsEmpowerSD. 


Riverside County Office of Education

Louisa Higgins, Regional Arts Lead

Riverside County Office of Education

Riverside County has formally launched its arts advocacy group in the form of ARTS NOW RIVERSIDE COUNTY.  At its launch event on September 28th, 55 attendees from all over the county and representing 23 districts came together to learn more about how to improve and expand their arts education offerings.  The next meeting will be held on November 28th and will feature news updates, a speaker and arts activity, as well as collegial discussion.  Our goal is to have quarterly meetings and be able to network all districts into current arts information.  Next year, we will expand the group to include student representatives for each network.

Riverside County has also supported the launch of Creativity at the Core Module 12:  LEADERSHIP IN ARTS EDUCATION, by hosting a presentation of the module at The Cheech Museum in Riverside.  The newly opened museum has one of the nation’s largest collections of Chicano art.  The event was hosted by Riverside County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Edwin Gomez, who gave opening remarks.  It was attended by 50 principals from throughout Riverside and Los Angeles counties.  Louisa Higgins, Arts Administrator of RCOE and Jeannine Flores, Arts & STEAM Coordinator for LACOE presented the material that they created at the invitation of the California County Superintendents Arts Initiative.


Jeannine Flores, Regional Arts Lead

Los Angeles County Office of Education

Los Angeles County Office of Education

The Los Angeles County Office of Education’s Center for Distance and Online Learning has partnered with the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture to provide high quality professional learning through the Technology Enhanced Arts Learning (TEAL) Project. The goal of TEAL is to increase students’ equitable access to the arts by expanding TK-8 teachers’ capacity to provide culturally relevant, integrated arts instruction which centers on Social Emotional Learning (SEL) for all students. 

TEAL provides interactive and experiential professional learning focused on integrating culturally inclusive arts and SEL across multiple subject curriculum. Take the no-cost opportunity to experience and immerse in TEAL strategies to provide equitable access to culturally inclusive arts integration for students, families, and communities while promoting student voice and leadership for ALL. 

If you are interested or need more project information, please visit the TEAL website and complete the application form:

Teal Across California

Technology Enhanced Arts Learning (TEAL) from the Center for Distance and Online Learning (CDOL) at the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE) is supporting a year-long theatre arts integration series at the Thousand Oaks Performing Arts Center. This professional learning series is sponsored by TOArts Development Director, Niki Richardson. TEAL is a program that can be implemented anywhere. This work with TOArts is an example of our statewide expansion effort.

Mindful Strategies’ theatre teaching artists, Kellen Law and Hector Marquez led TK-6 teachers through arts integration strategies for all learners. Participants made connections to their classrooms and curriculum with theatre. Jeannine Flores (LACOE) led participants through the TEAL online course and website resources. Peggy Burt, founder of Mindful Strategies said “Bringing the TEAL arts integration model to TOArts has fulfilled a part of the recently finished strategic plan for Conejo Valley Unified. I am thrilled with the receptive and enthusiastic teacher participation!” 

Participating teachers are from Conejo Valley Unified School District, Santa Paula Unified School District, and Hueneme Elementary School District – all located in Ventura county. Conejo Valley Unified completed a strategic arts plan earlier this year. Brian Peter, the Conejo Valley VAPA TOSA said, “Arts integration was one of the desired outcomes of our strategic plan. I’m grateful for Mindful Strategies in helping with the plan and designing the professional learning series, the partnership with TOArts, and for LACOE’s support and access to the TEAL.

Jeannine Flores, the Region 11 Arts Lead for the California County Superintendents was recently published in EdSource for her piece “Too many California schools fail to provide mandated arts education; let’s fix that” on October 10, 2022. The article speaks to the recent report from SRI Education and the Hewlett Foundation called, The Creativity Challenge. You can read the article here.

California Department of Education


Arts, Music, & Instructional Materials Block Grant Guidance 

To assist local educational agencies (LEAs) with specifications in Section 56 of Assembly Bill 185 (AB 185): The Arts, Music, and Instructional Materials Discretionary Block Grant, the Curriculum Frameworks and Instructional Resources Division has partnered with the Educator Excellence and Equity Division and the School Fiscal Services Division at the California Department of Education to provide support for LEAs to proportionally use their allocation for the five purposes enumerated in Section 134(a)(1)–(5), which include

  1. The acquisition of standards-aligned instructional materials and professional development in ten specified subject areas;
  2. School climate;
  3. Diverse, culturally relevant, and multilingual libraries;
  4. Costs related to COVID-19; and
  5. Resources regarding funding.
  • Arts, Music, and Instructional Materials Block Grant Web Page, including links to various webinars, the accompanying presentation slides, and resource documents, as well as information on each of the five purposes.
    • Webinar 1: Navigating the Arts, Music and Instructional Materials Discretionary Block Grant – An Overview (October 14, 2022)
  • Webinar 2: Block Grant Funding Options for Professional Development and Instructional Materials (October 19, 2022)
  • Content-Specific Mini Webinars: Coming soon!

The Exemplary Arts Education Award 

The Award has changed since last year and will now be open to all elementary, middle, and high schools. The awardees will hold their title for three years. To apply for the award, visit the California Exemplary Arts Education Award web page. The deadline to apply is November 30, 2022.

Arts Media and Entertainment Updates

The Creative Careers Leadership Lab Pilot

Arts Media and Entertainment (AME) has launched the Creative Career Leadership Lab (CCLL), a youth leadership organization delivering leadership development and work-based learning programs for youth interested in pursuing careers in the following creative industries:

  1. Animation, Visual Effects (VFX), and Game Production
  2. Dance/Theater
  3. Design
  4. Film/Television Production
  5. Live Event Production
  6. Multimedia Communications
  7. Music and Audio Production

This year, we are piloting the CCLL with 13 AME-focused middle and high schools throughout California and working with nearly 1000 students to deliver high-quality programming including:

My Future Matters Curriculum

Lesson plans designed to build the next generation of student leaders through tutelage in problem solving, relationship building, communication and collaboration.

Creative Team Challenges – Opportunities for students to collaborate on creative challenges that help them build real-life skills.

Partner Skill Building Sessions – Workshops facilitated by partner organizations providing students an introduction to skills and tools used in the creative industry.

Statewide GRID Summit – Multi-day gathering bringing together students and teachers to experience performances, connect with resources, engage in a series of creativity-exploring workshops.

Regional GRID Hangouts – Pathway-specific career panels, Q&As, skill-building resources, and opportunities to network.

With the goal of fostering the development of creative skills and leadership capability for high school students,  the CCLL’s target audience are youth ages 12 to 18. Students are introduced to a variety of creative industries and learning opportunities, and build their skills, strengthen their confidence, self-awareness, creativity, and work ethic. 

For more information, please contact Loree Goffigon at

AME Institute

AME Institute offers live, virtual, and customized support for AME pathways in your county and district. Here’s a quick look at our 2023 programming:

  • AME Institute Pop-Up Oakland
    March 10, 2023
    The AME Institute is coming to the Bay Area for a one-day Pop-Up event. Hosted by Oakland School for the Arts and offering exclusive programming from Pixar, KQED, Adobe and many Bay Area partners and programs, yon’t won’t want to miss this event!
  • AME Institute Burbank
    June 20, 21, and 22, 2023
    This is your opportunity to get inside the creative industries with AME Institute. Train on the latest software, network with colleagues, and expand the network that supports your AME pathway. 
  • CAMEO Virtual Learning Series
    Monthly on the 3rd Thursday
    CAMEO brings our AME community together monthly for professional learning and communities of practice. Check out the monthly schedule of events, and register to join us. Each meeting ends with breakout meetings for the eight AME Communities of Practice.
  • Customized Professional Learning
    Interested in facilitating deeper AME collaborations, realigning your pathways to the new AME standards, or hosting industry panels or speakers to build AME awareness? AME Institute wants to work with you to develop custom PD that fits the needs of your AME pathways.

Sign up for the monthly AME Institute newsletter for great offers, news, and updates from AME Partner organizations:

For more information contact Ashley Adams at




The goals of the Curriculum and Instruction Steering Committee (CISC) are to provide leadership and high-quality services to school districts by:

  1. Supporting academic achievement and continuous improvement, with a focus on closing the achievement gap: Strengthen county office of education capacity to support districts, schools, and county programs in fully implementing State Standards and preparing for SBAC annual assessment in order to improve student achievement, with particular focus on under-served student populations, English learners, early learning, and college and career readiness.
  2. Developing collaborative leadership approaches that are future-focused, and responsive to changing conditions: Take steps to build strong working relationships with CDE and state leaders, with California County Superintendents Steering Committees, COE superintendents, and district leaders; seek collaborative approaches that support districts in their improvement efforts while continually building CISC’s internal leadership capacity.
  3. Addressing national initiatives: Provide leadership that supports California in developing and implementing plans to address federal initiatives, including Common Core Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and ESSA.
  4. Providing leadership for California initiatives impacting instruction and student achievement: Work in collaboration with CDE, state leaders and other key stakeholders and California County Superintendents steering committees to provide leadership in the areas of key statewide initiatives such as implementation of the Local Control Funding Formula, Local Control Plans, the Quality Schooling Framework, and other statewide initiatives.
  5. Providing leadership for technology-based curriculum and instruction approaches: Work in coordination with other key stakeholders and California County Superintendents steering committees to provide leadership in areas related to technology and innovation including virtual schools and courses, online professional development resources and tools, electronic textbooks, and other technology-based areas that influence and accelerate teaching and learning,


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