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Home > About > News and Events > News > Member News > Urban Gateways Participates in Turnaround Arts: Chicago

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Urban Gateways Participates in Turnaround Arts: Chicago

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May 21, 2014

Urban Gateways has announced its participation in Turnaround Arts: Chicago as the strategic arts partner working with Academy for Urban School Leadership (AUSL) and the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH) to provide rigorous arts education programs in three Chicago schools. The Turnaround Arts Initiative is designed to help turn around low-performing schools, narrow the achievement gap, and increase student engagement through the arts.

The national program is funded through a public-private partnership, receiving more than $5 million over the next three years from the U.S. Department of Education, the National Endowment of the Arts, the Ford Foundation, and other private foundations and companies to bring arts education into low-performing schools. Local program partners provide an additional $12 million to hire new arts and music teachers; bring teaching artists, art supplies and music instruments into schools; and support arts integration into other core subject areas such as reading, math and science.
First Lady Michelle Obama, honorary chair of the President’s Committee, said, “The Turnaround Arts program has exceeded not just our expectations, but our wildest hopes and dreams. With the help of this program and some School Improvement Grants, math and reading scores have gone up in these schools… attendance is up, enrollment is up…parent engagement is up… suspensions have plummeted…and two of the schools in our pilot improved so dramatically that they are no longer in turnaround status. And today, the students in these schools are engaged in their education like never before.”
“AUSL is honored and excited to serve as the Chicago Turnaround Arts partner.  The Turnaround Arts initiative will continue to propel AUSL’s efforts to close the achievement gap and improve educational outcomes for students in the lowest performing schools in Chicago.  The arts have been an important component of our turnaround work and, every year since 2008, turnaround schools managed by AUSL have outpaced the gains by the Chicago Public Schools on the ISAT, the Illinois Standards Achievement Test.  AUSL will work with Urban Gateways, our strategic arts partner on this initiative, to enrich our students experiences in the arts,” said Dr. Don Feinstein, Executive Director of AUSL.
About Urban Gateways
Urban Gateways’ mission is to educate and inspire young people by delivering high-quality, accessible arts experiences that advance their personal and academic growth. Urban Gateways engages Chicago’s youth in arts activities that build essential skills like creativity, collaboration and innovation, and improves the self-esteem and confidence necessary to succeed in life. Founded in 1961 with a purpose to ensure that all young people have full access to the city’s cultural wealth, Urban Gateways is widely considered a national pioneer in the field of arts education. Their programs include artist residencies, family and community workshops, touring performances, and professional development for educators.

This resource brought to you by the National Guild for Community Arts Education.