I am a big believer in the importance of the fine arts in education. For our school, it is one of the things that makes us different than other schools in the city. We invest the resources and time to make the fine arts program at a world class standard. It starts with hiring the best teachers and then supporting them with resources and facilities to make it happen. A school also needs to promote participation in the fine arts as well.
Last weekend we had our fall performance, Soiree. New ISB Performing Arts Teacher, Mr. Bruce McDonald, chose to do a variety musical to get as many kids participating as possible. The students with more experience and talent, had more roles or more difficult songs and dance routines. Those new to theatre or less talented, had smaller roles.
I has a couple small parts and it was so much fun! The best part was experiencing the excitement of the kids first hand. It is rare to see teenagers so enthusiastic about a school activity. It cemented in my mind the central location to the education of young people, the fine arts should have in any school.
If someone is looking for a rationale to the inclusion of the fine arts in a school, just the public speaking and performing skills will go a long way to aid the careers of our students. There are many more reasons, but for me in this production, the good will and camaraderie shared by all 70 of us in the production, goes a long way in building a caring, collaborative environment for teachers and learners.
It is a memory I will cherish when I look back on my career! Thanks Bruce and the students of ISB!