Sophie Martin once asked me to do something I had never done before. I asked her why she thought I could do it. She said she knew I could do it because I studied theater.

   Los Lunas High School just terminated its drama program. According to the report I got, it was not considered essential for college preparation.

   The drama teacher for Los Lunas Middle School who told us this, Robert Stubbs, Sr., is actually a math teacher. He had brought his students to our Schooltime Series presentation of Macbeth this spring. Now, of course, he won’t be bringing students to any of our Schooltime performances. They won’t be essential.

   I’m saddened — offended, even — that we think we have to cut from our schools anything not considered “essential.” What day-to-day incentives do you provide students if all you offer in a school are essentials? We need a few raisins in our oatmeal. Otherwise it’s just gruel.

   Students who play in their high school band outscore their peers on standardized tests. One reason is that those kids show up for school more often. They have to: they're part of the band, part of a team.

   Studying the arts demands inquiry. Rather than all wisdom coming down from the teacher, students gather knowledge based on their own curiosity. They explore. They inquire. They make connections. Those learning processes are the building blocks for creativity, a quality found sorely lacking in our recent graduates, according to many employers. Those recent graduates come from schools that keep trimming budgets by cutting "non-essential" programs like the arts.

   Our schools can’t give kids just the “essentials” every day. Otherwise it’s like sending kids to basic training for 13 years. (And that would just be grueling.)

   The students at Albuquerque's Public Academy for Performing Arts study the basics, plus they study various live art forms. PAPA was ranked as one of New Mexico’s top five high schools by U.S. News and World Report. One of the criteria for the ranking was college readiness. So now what’s essential?

   Albert Einstein loved to play the violin. He also said, “All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.” Let’s not cut out a third of that tree. Our students won’t want to climb it.

Terry S. Davis
Popejoy Hall

Views: 188

Comment

You need to be a member of Duke City Fix to add comments!

Join Duke City Fix

Connect with Us!

Community Forum

Black Cherry Pie!!! 8 Replies

Started by Adelita in General Discussion. Last reply by vinceinburque Aug 17.

Protein Shake Shack? 1 Reply

Started by Kitson Harvey in Food & Drink. Last reply by Phil_0 Aug 14.

HMOs in Albuquerque 3 Replies

Started by PJH in General Discussion. Last reply by PJH Aug 12.

My blog for where to go for lunch in ABQ 2 Replies

Started by Gretchen Winchester in Food & Drink. Last reply by Ron Da Bomb Aug 12.

Latest Activity

Profile IconDuke City Fix via Facebook
Thumbnail

The tangled web APS continues to weave.

F.U.B.A.R.

dukecityfix.com

A total disaster! The Albuquerque Public School Board of Education failed once again to come to…

See More
Facebook3 hours ago · Reply
Adelita liked Brian Fejer's blog post F.U.B.A.R.
3 hours ago
Brian Fejer's blog post was featured
5 hours ago
Brian Fejer posted a blog post
5 hours ago

Regular Features

Anyone can blog on the Duke City Fix, but here are the folks who blog most often:

© 2015   Created by Duke City Fix.

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service