Arts education increases student engagement

Our staff continued to engage in the review and revision of our instructional programs with the Elevated Achievement Group to ensure all students were performing at the highest levels in the classroom. This was one of our Action Plan Goals as developed by our staff during our last WASC visit. This definitely paid off as we had an amazing year of testing as the results for the CAASPP test reflected positively on our students and staff. While this was a new test in 2016, with new measures for student success, 88% of Sonora students scored at or above standards in English and 70% score at or above average in Math. We will take these data and celebrate our students’ success and also look for areas to increase student achievement in the classroom. Attendance numbers continue to improve at Sonora where we again posted an increase in student attendance.

Children learn positive habits, behaviors and attitudes

Arts education helps foster a positive culture and climate in schools. When schools integrate the arts across the curriculum, disciplinary referrals decrease while effectiveness of instruction and teachers’ ability to meet the needs of all students increase. Learning a musical instrument, creating a painting, learning to dance, or singing in a chorus teaches that taking small steps, practicing to improve, being persistent, and being patient are important for children’s growth and improvement. Students gain confidence as they try to accomplish things that do not come easily. Learning an artistic discipline helps young people develop character. Students learn habits, behaviors and attitudes that are necessary for success in any field of endeavor.