The CPS Department of Arts Education offers a wide range of resources for students who are passionate about the arts. Browse to learn more about free district-wide arts programs and CPS schools with a focus on the arts, and find links to out-of-school arts programs offered by external partners as well as resources for college and career planning.

Districtwide CPS Arts Programs

To give every CPS student access to the arts, and to support and recognize student achievement in the fine and performing arts, we offer the following programs for CPS students from throughout the city:

  • All-City Programs: citywide exhibitions and performances of CPS student work in music, theatre, dance, and visual arts.
  • Advanced Arts Program: two years of credit-bearing honors and Advanced Placement (AP) courses in the arts, as well as college and career planning, for students in CPS high schools that do not offer advanced arts courses.
  • Senior Portfolio Exhibition: a partnership with the School of the Art Institute of Chicago that gives CPS seniors an opportunity to exhibit their artwork and gain exposure among college admissions representatives.

Student Arts Opportunities Outside of School

Many arts organizations and institutions in Chicago offer classes, workshops, exhibits, summer programs, festivals, competitions, and other events that enable students to experience, make, and learn about art.

Arts-Focused CPS Schools

We partner with the CPS Office of Access and Enrollment and the CPS Department of Magnet, Gifted, and International Baccalaureate (MGIB) Programs to inform parents and students about the high-quality arts learning opportunities available at these schools and to maintain fair and balanced admission procedures.

College and Career Planning in the Arts

To help students continue to study and work in the arts after high school, we’ve pulled together a list of colleges, arts schools, arts-related career fairs and other resources to consider.