#WeAllDeserveArts: AEMS April Newsletter

April 23, 2021


  • A Letter from the Executive Director
  • Advocacy Updates
  • Upcoming Programs & Events
  • artlook® Maryland Arts Partner Promotions!
  • Collaborator Updates
  • Readings / Resources We Love

A Letter from the Executive Director, Quanice G. Floyd

Dear Arts Education Family,

What a year it has been already and we’re only in April! 

The 2021 general session was unlike any other general session we’ve ever had. Because of the virtual world, changes happened faster than normal and every day was a new advocacy adventure. We’ve had triumphs with the passing of the Blueprint bill and challenges with SB0915 failing to make it out of committee. 

There have been days where we mobilized together as a strong arts and education community and other days where we were exhausted. I am proud of the amazing work AEMS has done this general session and grateful for all of your support. I look forward to next year’s general session and continuing to push our arts education agenda forward!

As for AEMS, it is an exciting time for all of us. We are starting a new chapter: bringing in new board members, starting our journey to anti-racism, restructuring the organization, and creating new programs! There is so much to look forward to and I’m happy to have you all along with us for the journey. Please be sure to follow us on social media (@artsedmaryland) to learn more about what we have in store!

Quanice G. Floyd

Advocacy Updates

The Blueprint for Maryland’s Future was officially signed into law during the 2021 session! We are so grateful for all of the legislators who voted to support the future of education in Maryland and for all the advocates that tirelessly championed this bill. With increased funding, schools will be more equipped to ensure that all children are receiving the arts education they deserve. To learn more about some of the big wins in the Blueprint Bill, check out this recap from our friends at Arts Every Day. AEMS is also excited to share that the Digital Connectivity Act was signed into law and the Maryland Arts Capital Bill passed and is awaiting Governor Hogan’s signature. Take action by encouraging the Governor to support! 

Programs & Events

Arts Education Access Report

In Maryland, all public school students are entitled to arts education. If students in your life do not have access to arts education in their classrooms, or if you are concerned about them losing access, AEMS wants to know about it! Fill out an arts education access report form at bit.ly/AEMSReport. This will help us to help you with strategies and support, and it will better inform our advocacy efforts.

Examples of situations that affect arts education access may include:

  • Canceled arts classes
  • Fewer arts teachers/arts teachers reassigned to other subjects
  • Significant scheduling changes
  • Inadequate materials or resources
  • Other courses prioritized over arts
  • Inequitable access to the arts


The Anti-Racist Educators in the Arts Learning Lab (A-REALL), is continuing strong, with more impactful sessions in April. An overwhelming majority of cohort members have found the sessions helpful in their teaching and learning practice. “It has helped me define direction for my advocacy,” wrote one participant about the most recent A-REALL session. Learn more about this collaborative program with MSDE at a-reall.org

Baltimore City Arts Educator Town Hall

Calling all Baltimore City Public School Arts Educators!

AEMS, in partnership with Arts Every Day, will be co-hosting a town hall on May 4th 2021 at 4pm. This town hall is an opportunity for educators to talk about how AEMS and AED can best support them. Registration is available here.

Maryland Arts Integration Network (MAIN)

AEMS wrapped up its arts integration series Dramatic Moves! ELA, Math, and Science Come to Life through Drama and Dance, sponsored by the Frederick County-based Ausherman and Delaplaine Family Foundations. Designed and led by arts integration specialists Lenore Blank Kelner and Kimberli Boyd, the workshop led K-2 educators through effective lesson plans and strategies to incorporate drama with English language and reading comprehension and to incorporate dance with math or  science. With schools and districts on different timelines for bringing students back into classrooms, the course was designed to use equally effective techniques for virtual/hybrid or in-person instruction. A comment AEMS received from the final session sums up the whole experience for attendees: “Incorporating performing arts will take my lessons up a few notches. This will make learning more exciting and interesting for my students. It is sure to engage students and brighten up my Zoom meetings.” Thank you again to Lenore and Kimberli for your hard work and expertise!

artlook® Maryland Arts Partner Promotions

Check out the following promotions and opportunities from some of our incredible artlook® Maryland Arts Partners!

Want to learn more about joining the artlook® Maryland community?

Email artlookmd@aems-edu.org or explore our website.

Leaders of Tomorrow Youth Center (LTYC)

LTYC is hiring summer and after school arts instructors! Are you passionate about arts education and impacting the lives of today’s youth? LTYC is the perfect place for you to expand your career! They are seeking dynamic and dedicated artists and educators with experience in Performing and Creative Arts to serve as After School, Summer & On-Call Instructors for PK-12 Students! Apply today by submitting a cover letter and resume to HR@LTYC.Net 

Creative Nomads

Registration is now open for the MAY THE 4th Be With You Family Art Experience! Creative Nomads is excited to celebrate Star Wars with some fun activities for the community. Families with children 4 -14 years of age will enjoy Star Wars themed arts and crafts, a family selfie area, food and drinks, and a movie! This outdoor event will have social distance measures and plenty of PPE on site. Families can register for the event HERE. Learn more by following Creative Nomads on social media (IG: @creative_nomads) and emailing hello@thecreativenomads.org.

Root Branch Virtual Learning

Spring registration is open for Root Branch’s Virtual Learning programs! This year Root Branch is offering three Pay As You Go courses: Photography for Kids, Teen Blogging 101, and Kids Kemetic Yoga. Spring enrollment for the Pay As You Go courses ends on May 1st so make sure to register soon! Learn more by visiting: https://rootbranchvirtual.com/pay-as-you-go/

Arts on the Block

The Apprenticeship Program (TAP) application is now open! TAP is a free, virtual summer intensive workshop for high school students who have a passion for visual arts. Apprentices are paid with an educational stipend or can earn Student Service Learning hours and train in art, job, and life skills while meeting and collaborating with creative peers. Join this fun, creative team! Learn more & Apply: https://www.artsontheblock.com/programs/the-apprentice-program/

Arts on Stage 

When live performances were shut down, Arts On Stage quickly switched gears to launch a reimagined season, Arts On Stage: Press Play, Virtual Field Trips! Bringing professional, affordable, arts-based learning into the classroom. We have a show for “virtually” any topic and grade, with new shows being added frequently. The performance is only the beginning of the virtual field trip – students will also watch a Q&A with the performers and producers of the production and participate in other activities. Learn more today at: artsonstage-pressplay.square.site email, artsonstage@artsonstage.org, or call 410-252-8717

Collaborator Updates

Maryland Arts Summit

Save the Date! The Maryland Arts Summit will take place virtually on June 3 and 4, 2021. This event is FREE and open to ALL. 

Interested in presenting? Submit your proposal by Friday, April 23rd at midnight. Learn more and apply at https://www.msac.org/about/msac-events

Maryland State Department of Education Fine Arts Office

Hands are for Holding with Gibney Dance is next Thursday, April 29th! Interested in experiencing how arts can be a great entry point to explore complex issues with young people? Gibney’s Hands are for Holding® is a workshop series that uses dance and movement to engage in conversation about healthy relationships, cyber-abuse, equity, boundaries, and consent in everyday interactions. Register at bit.ly/3oEDagQ

Maryland State Arts Council

Check out the Maryland State Arts Council’s eventbrite page for a wide variety of virtual professional development, listening sessions, and opportunities to connect.

Readings/Resources We Love

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