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Initiatives / BPS Arts Expansion / Impact

Impact

BPS Arts Expansion has made Boston a national leader in expanding access to arts education in the public schools. Accomplishments to date include:

  • From 2009-2020, the percentage of BPS pre-K through 8th grade students receiving a minimum of weekly, year-long arts instruction or its equivalent increased from 67% to 97%.
  • From 2009-2020, the percentage of BPS pre-K through 8th grade students receiving twice weekly, year-long arts instruction or its equivalent increased from less than 10% to 67%.
  • From 2009-2020, the percentage of BPS high school students receiving any arts instruction more than doubled to 72% in 2019-2020.
  • From 2014-2019, the percentage of BPS high school students meeting the MassCore arts graduation requirement increased from 52% to 68%.

BPS Arts Expansion has conducted several studies to assess our impact on Boston students.

Released in May 2021, The Arts Advantage: Impacts of Arts Education on Boston Students highlights the role that arts access has on increased student engagement as measured by reductions in absenteeism, increases in student and parent school engagement, and modest effects on student achievement, particularly in English Language Arts for middle school students. Read the report here.

Released in May 2016, Dancing to the Top examines the multi-year, collaborative process that has made Boston a national leader in arts education. It includes a number of resources designed to help others undertake similar work. The key strategies and actions used to advance the collective effort around arts education in Boston and documented in this case study can be replicated and/or adapted to other contexts and issue areas in Boston, as well as in other cities across the country. Read the report here.