The Texas Cultural Trust (TCT) is pleased to announce an award of $777,200 from the Houston Endowment in a multi-year grant to support the Invest in the Arts. The Arts Perform advocacy campaign. The overall goal of the campaign is to improve public support of funding for the arts and arts education in the public schools. The 2012 campaign showcased the economic impact the arts have on the state. The 2014 campaign built on that research to also highlight the impact arts education has on Texas students. With this grant, the Trust will be able to uncover, district-by-district, the access Texas public school children currently have to arts education. This is the largest single private gift the Trust has received since its inception in 1995. This initiative advances the Trust’s mission to be the leading voice for the arts in education, advocacy, and economic impact in Texas, spotlighting the artistic excellence of our state. The Texas Cultural Trust is committed to increasing access to arts education for all students in Texas.
“This grant is a wonderful validation of all of the hard work the Trust has done so far in promoting the importance of the arts to not only our economy, but also to our children’s education,” said Judy Robison, Board Chair of the Texas Cultural Trust. “The continued support of the Houston Endowment, coupled with the Trust’s research showing 80 percent of Texas voters support increased funding in arts education, says to us that now is the time to engage those impassioned supporters; now is the time to improve public funding for the arts and arts education in public schools.”
Like previous campaigns, the 2016-2017 effort will be an evidence-based multimedia campaign, including earned media, advertising, and social media. Because of the generosity of the Houston Endowment, the campaign will also include a grassroots component with a website that serves as a digital hub where stakeholders can find information about their individual school district and then take action based on that information.
“We know the arts perform for our economy and for our children.” said Jennifer Ransom Rice, executive director of the Texas Cultural Trust. “With this research we will be able to paint a picture of how, when and where Texas kids have access to arts education, and then provide resources to help parents, school districts, arts organizations and policymakers understand and address the gaps in arts education.”
In addition to the new research into arts access, the Trust will provide the latest data on the economic impact of the arts and produce the 2017 “State of the Arts” report, which will be released in January at the start of the 85th Texas Legislative Session. Key data points from the previous effort include:
· The arts generated $5.1 billion for our state’s economy
· The arts contribute nearly $320 million in state sales tax revenue annually
· Students who complete more arts classes have up to 15% higher pass rates on standardized test scores
· Students who complete more than one arts class are half as likely to drop out
· 80% of Texas voters support increased funding for the arts in schools
The Trust will again work with Dr. Brent Hasty of MINDPOP who will explore students’ access to the arts in their communities. Economist Travis James of Texas Perspectives will again conduct the economic research. For the first time ever, the Trust will use a paid media campaign that will include a comprehensive bilingual radio, print and digital advertising campaign. TCT is also proud to announce a first-ever partnership with the Texas Association of Broadcasters’ Non-Commercial Sustaining Announcement Program. For more information on the Invest in the Arts. The Arts Perform campaign, visit www.txculturaltrust.org/investinthearts
The Texas Cultural Trust is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote the importance of the arts in educating our children and sustaining our vibrant Texas economy, through awareness, outreach, economic research, and the development of arts education curriculum for public school students. Programs of the Texas Cultural Trust include the biennial Texas Medal of Arts Awards, the Texas Young Masters Program, Create Texas, Arts and Digital Literacy Initiative, Adventures in the ARTS—a children's book, Texas Women for the Arts and Founders for the Arts, as well as support for programs of the Texas Commission on the Arts and other qualifying state agencies. For more information on TCT, please visit www.txculturaltrust.org.