Welcome to the Spring 2022 Young Audiences Arts for Learning (YA) Newsletter! As we continue strong into our 70th year, we’re sharing highlights from YA Week, looking back on our National Conference in New Orleans, delivering network-wide professional learning, and — as we are thrilled to formally announce — planning for our 70th Anniversary Gala. Read on for all the latest news and updates.
Sharing Highlights from YA Week, Our Annual Advocacy and Awareness Initiative
Last month during National Young Audiences Arts for Learning Week (YA Week) 2022, we joined forces with YA network affiliates to collectively shine a light on the importance of arts in education for all students across our nation and in our communities. We were incredibly grateful to see so much enthusiasm and support for this year’s YA Week, from both within the YA network and beyond.
The US House of Representatives formally marked YA Week 2022 with a congressional resolution, introduced by Representative Chellie Pingree (D-ME), who serves as co-chair of the Congressional Arts Caucus, and co-sponsored by Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), co-chair of the Congressional STEAM Caucus.
Also among those championing YA Week 2022 were President Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, who commemorated the occasion through a Presidential Letter. "The past two years have been exceptionally challenging for so many across our Nation and world," President Biden wrote, adding that YA Week "is a reminder that young Americans can foster hope, acceptance, and inspiration through artistic creation." Read more.
Arts & Action in New Orleans
Thanks go out to everyone who made this spring’s YA National Conference such an enriching, spirited, arts-filled, and action-packed gathering. Arts & Action: Building Pathways for Partnership and Engagement in Classrooms and Communities was our network’s first in-person conference since 2019, and we sure did make the most out of our time together in New Orleans, LA.
We are pleased to share with you some photo highlights from the conference, as well as recordings of the Keynote Address and Plenary Panel Discussion. Explore conference highlights here.
Starting in March, over 125 teaching artists and staff members from across the YA network embarked on the first professional learning event for the Responsive Arts in School Education (RAISE) program, engaging in self-guided learning modules and live online sessions.
RAISE, currently in its first year of a five-year grant from the US Department of Education, seeks to transform teaching artist practice through intensive training in healing-centered, culturally responsive and sustaining practices as well as school-based residencies. The latter will roll out later this month at Young Audiences of Louisiana, our New Orleans-based affiliate. Over the course of the grant, RAISE residency work will expand to at least 18 affiliate sites across the YA network. We will continue to share updates around this groundbreaking professional learning initiative.
Meet Our Program Coordinator Taya Jackson
Earlier this year we welcomed Taya Jackson to our team as Program Coordinator, Network Initiatives. In this new role, Taya provides essential support for YA’s Teaching Artist Credential, RAISE, and other professional learning programs led by the YA National Office. To help introduce Taya, we sat down with her for a Q & A Session.
In Other News...
YA National Executive Director David A. Dik is headed to Anaheim, CA, next month for The NAMM Show (June 3-5), an annual gathering of the global music, sound, and entertainment technology industry. He will be featured in sessions for The NAMM Foundation’s Nonprofit Management Institute and Music Education Days.
Save the Date! Young Audiences Arts for Learning's 70th Anniversary Gala will be held November 9, 2022, at the Mandarin Oriental in New York. We can't wait! Please stay tuned for Gala updates.