Seattle Public Schools Arts Newsletter   | September, 2019
September Focus:
Welcome to the 2019-20 Year in the Arts
This issue includes:
What is new this year?
  • The audience for the newsletter expands
  • New funds for school arts sustainability
  • 3 Regional Arts Festivals
  • Arts Calendar: Send us your arts events!
  • The Seahawks are supporting arts education

And also...
  • The Creative Advantage in the news
  • Opportunities for teachers and students
  • Goodbye and appreciation to Lara Davis
Students in the Photography class at Chief Sealth International High School.
Photo by Stephen Brashear.
What's New This Year?
The Creative Advantage Arts Teams Newsletter Is Now
The SPS Arts Newsletter

Welcome to the 2019-20 school year! This is the SPS Arts Newsletter. In previous years, it went out to everyone who was on a Creative Advantage arts team. This year, 81 schools are Creative Advantage schools, and within the next two years, ALL schools will be Creative Advantage schools, so we've reached critical mass and thus, we're expanding the focus of this Newsletter to include content of interest to ANYONE in a Seattle school community with an interest in expanding all types of arts learning in their school.

Each month, the newsletter will include ideas and opportunities for expanding arts access for every Seattle student to high-quality arts courses, innovative and culturally-responsive teaching through arts integration strategies, as well as learning with through artist residencies with Seattle's vibrant arts community. Why? To empower student voices and enhance school culture today and to open doors to creative careers and lives tomorrow.
New Arts Sustainability Funds Application Is Now Open
The Creative Advantage Arts Sustainability Funds are a new non-competitive funding source to help schools sustain the student benefits that come from long-lasting arts partnerships beyond their initial 3 years of the Creative Advantage arts planning.  

Who is eligible? 

In the 2019-20 school year, schools in the first two Creative Advantage cohorts (24 schools in the Washington, Meany, and Denny K-12 Arts Pathways) and current Creative Advantage Community Arts Partner Roster members are eligible to apply for up to $5000 to fund a specific arts partnership (in-the-school day arts residency or school staff professional development) that a school and partner have already agreed upon.  
First Deadline is November 1st.

How do I apply? 

There is a brief application form. There are two application deadlines: Friday, November 1st and Friday, January 31st. A school can apply for funds for multiple partnerships in one year, but the total cannot exceed $5000. Once the application is approved, the school and partner will be notified at the email addresses provided in the application.

If you have any questions at all, please contact Audrey Querns and/or Tina LaPadula.

Find the Arts Sustainability Funds application here
3 Regional Arts Festivals in 2019-20

We are extremely excited for the start of the new school year as we get to celebrate the arts and the students through our very first Regional Art Festivals!

We have spent the Spring and Summer meeting with incredible educators and community partners to establish an overall vision that will capture participation amongst the Southeast, Southwest, and Central Regions. Locations are being established and dates are being secured for the winter season! We are also in the process of establishing a youth committee comprising of 5 students for each Region to assist with planning and executing of their Regional Arts Festival. 

If you would like your students to be celebrated in the Regional Art Festivals or know of students who would be interested in joining the student youth committee please contact our RAF Manager, Masao Yamada, via email at
Farewell and Appreciation for Lara Davis

After six incredible years leading the Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) Creative Youth programs, Lara Davis is leaving Seattle to pursue an opportunity with the Visionary Justice StoryLab.

Lara has been an igniter, innovator, connector and amplifier for The Creative Advantage from the its start in 2013. Without her unflagging focus on the intersections of racial social justice, young people, creativity and voice, The Creative Advantage would not exist as it does today.

Personally speaking, she is also a wonderful and wicked smart collaborator who is able to nerd out on a public policy or a multi-year budget spreadsheet too.

While we will miss Lara immensely, we are thrilled that she will taking time to reconnect with her own creativity and artistic practice.

Read more Lara's reflection on her time at ARTS and her future plans here .

Seahawks Gameday Posters That Support Arts Education

The Seahawks are supporting SPS’ Creative Advantage. At each home game, Seahawks fans can purchase a poster designed by a local artist.

This week’s Seahawks-Saints game-day poster features artwork by C oby Schultz . All proceeds benefit The Creative Advantage. Posters are available for purchase at for $25.

Shout-out to the Seattle Seahawks and local artists for supporting the arts in Seattle schools!

Amplifier is a Seattle-based design lab that builds art to amplify the voices of grassroots movements. Their Educator Amplifier program provides free artwork and teaching tools to anyone who signs up here.

Their current poster series, We the Future, showcases 10 young leaders representing 10 diverse movements and the images are by many of the greatest graphic artists working today, like Shepard Fairey and Kate DeCiccio.

Educators can sign up here to receive the newspaper and art pack.
Upcoming Events & Opportunities
New Creative Advantage Roster Partner Orientation
Tuesday, September 24th
5:30 - 7:30pm
@ ARTS at King Street Station

This is intended as a time for new partners (and new staffers from returning organizations), to learn more about how to maximize being on the Creative Advantage Roster and to explore tips for sustainable partnerships.

Asia Tale Leads a workshop at The Creative Advantage Summer Institute on August 15th.

Save the Date:
Creative Advantage Schools & Arts Partners Meet & Greet

Monday, October 28th
Late afternoon/evening

Langston Hughes Performing arts Institute in the Central District

This event promises more than get-to-know-you games....we're pulling the arts education community together to celebrate the creative power of partnerships. 

Fill your plate, grab a drink and pull a chair up to the communal table. It's time to listen to what schools are seeking, and what arts partners can offer.   
As you work to expand the arts in your school community, here are a few websites and people you can look to for help:

The Creative Advantage Page on the SPS website
Resources and tools for arts teams, Creative Advantage news and archived newsletters.

The Community Arts Partner Roster is a vetted list of teaching artists and community arts and culture organizations approved to work in Seattle Public Schools through the Creative Advantage.

The Creative Advantage Website Provides an overview of The Creative Advantage and the value of arts education.

If you can't find what you need on-line, contact the Creative Advantage staff:
Audrey Querns -SPS project manager for Creative Advantage (for questions about arts teams and planning, arts partner logistics like contracts and funding)
Tina LaPadula - Seattle Office of Arts & Culture Arts Education Project Manager (for questions about the Arts Partner Roster and working with teaching artists and arts organizations) 

Gail Sehlhorst -SPS Visual and Performing Arts Manager (for questions about arts staffing, curriculum and assessment, and supports for arts teachers)

Pam Ivezic - SPS Music Specialist (for questions about supports for music teachers and programs)