-The following post is not an endorsement of any particular candidate.-
It was refreshing to read a recent post in the Barrington Patch, about a candidate for school committee in the town to our north … Paula Dominguez “believes the arts must play a much stronger and more prominent role in Barrington’s schools.” As editor of The Arts Room I enthusiastically agree with this introductory statement, of course, but what really grabbed my attention was the way she backs it up. She says, “A well-rounded education broadens a student’s capacity to understand all subject matter”, and when she highlights 21st century skills (like creativity, generating ideas, and synthesizing information from different sources) she says, “This is what the artistic process is all about.” Now, there are many politicians who pay lip service to the importance of the arts in education. The fact that this candidate has the backbone to get more specific and make an accurate statement about the artistic process makes me think that she might be the real deal. And then my favorite part:
Dominguez would devote professional development time for teachers to the arts so they can incorporate the concepts into classroom instruction. “There is a crying need to bolster professional development of teachers in the arts,” she said.
Talk about backbone and specificity! A school committee candidate who appreciates the arts, understands their significance to education, and wants to nurture this appreciation and understanding in her public school system’s educators … if I lived in Barrington, I’d be spending some time getting to know this candidate before November 6th.
But I do not live in Barrington, and I’m left wondering, what do our Bristol and Warren school committee candidates believe regarding the arts in our schools? What will they feel “honor-bound to pursue”, if elected?