Culture Plan Emphasizes Arts in Schools

Excerpts and Photo Captions from Chicago Tribune article Tuesday, October 16, 2012
By Mark Caro and Heather Gillers
Tribune Reporters

Flanked by arts superstars Yo-Yo Ma, Renee Fleming and Damian Woetzel at a Pilsen elementary school, Mayor Rahm Emanuel placed the Chicago Public Schools at the forefront of the long-awaited Chicago Cultural Plan 2012, unveiled Monday.

As had been discussed in drafts and numerous community meetings that began in February, the Cultural Plan, the city’s first since the Harold Washington administration’s from 1986-87, emphasizes boosting the arts in the city’s neighborhoods. But the No. 1 initiative among 10 laid out in the plan is “Reinvigorating arts education and creating new opportunities for lifelong learning.”

“During the planning process, arts education consistently emerged as the No. 1 concern of Chicagoans, and without fail it was the most discussed issue at every one of our community meetings,” Cultural Affairs and Special Events Commissioner Michelle Boone told students, educators and arts leaders assembled in the atrium of Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School. “So for the very first time, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events will collaborate with Chicago Public Schools to launch a new Arts Education Plan as the cornerstone of the Chicago Cultural Plan 2012.”

Click here to view the full article.

Additional photos from the event at Perez Elementary School by José M. Osorio, Chicago Tribune:

Artistic Trio

Renée Fleming, left, chats with Damian Woetzel, middle, and Yo-Yo Ma during a pause in a performance at Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood on Monday, Oct. 15, 2012.

 

Poetry in Motion

From left, Xochitl Paez, Tamara Sanchez, Ivan Alvarez and Brian Salgado, all fifth graders, read a poem they created with the help of Damian Woetzel, left, and Renée Fleming, right, during a performance at Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School.

 

Mayor Meet and Greet

Mayor Rahm Emanuel greets children at Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood on Monday, Oct. 15, 2012 following his press conference on the City of Chicago’s Chicago Cultural Plan.

 

Cellist at Play

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma at the conclusion of an event at Manuel Perez Jr. Elementary School.  Ma was joined at the performance by singer Renée Fleming and retired Damian Woetzel, who all led a program as the City of Chicago released the Chicago Cultural Plan 2012.