Arts Advocacy Video : “Why The Arts?”

Santa Cruz County Superintendent of Schools Michael Watkins is a strong advocate for arts programs in schools. Believing in the importance of arts education, the SCCOE has created a video featuring student voices expressing their thoughts on the value of studying the arts.

young boy sitting at table coloringThe video examines the question “Why The Arts?” and is the culmination of a project coordinated by COE Arts Coordinator Mary McLaughlin in collaboration with the Santa Cruz Regional Occupational Program, district administrators, teachers, and K-12 students from throughout Santa Cruz County.

The story is told through interviews with students and video footage of arts lessons. Different school districts and grade levels are represented, as are the four arts disciplines: music, theater, dance and visual arts (including media arts). The footage is further augmented by photographs of students in schools who participated in short arts programs sponsored by the COE throughout the year.

The Regional Occupational Program was pivotal in the process and Watsonville High student, Amanda Reveles, both directed and edited the video under the supervision of ROP media arts instructor, Dale Poor.

“Why The Arts?” is truly the voice of our students—by students and about students. By listening to the students’ views on how having arts programs in schools positively affect their lives, we are inevitably led towards the question: “Are ALL of our students getting enough instruction in the four arts disciplines?”

We hope you find this short video enjoyable, informative and inspirational.