Advance the mission of school theatre
Support arts education advocacy

“Action is needed to place the arts front and center on education agendas in both the statehouse and the schoolhouse. And in the current education policy climate, evidence-based action and advocacy are needed to make a compelling case for why the arts matter for all students at all levels of education.”

-National Assembly of State Arts Agencies

Advocacy is essential to expanding access to theatre education for all students. The Educational Theatre Foundation holds advocacy efforts close to its mission and trains volunteers, theatre educators, and community partners how to advocate on behalf of theatre education. Donors, both individual and corporate, can support advocacy training by both annual and endowment giving.

Thespians from across the country come together to advocate arts education during March's Theatre in Our Schools month.

Thespians from across the country come together to advocate arts education during March’s Theatre in Our Schools month.

“It’s a fundamental part of our mission to influence public opinion as to the value of theatre education, and there is no better way to do that than to have our teachers on the front lines in state houses and school board meetings throughout the country.”

— Julie Cohen Theobald, president, Educational Theatre Foundation

Advocacy Leadership Network

The Educational Theatre Foundation, in partnership with EdTA, supports the Advocacy Leadership Network initiative. A three-year pilot project, the ALN is designed to train and empower theatre educators in grassroots advocacy efforts on behalf of theatre and other arts education. The Advocacy Leadership Network seeks to create an effective and self-sustaining network of advocates who shape and monitor state-based arts education policies, legislation, and successes that can be modeled by others.

“A lot of high schools have maybe a drama class. Most are after-school programs. The state of our middle school theatre education is almost nonexistent. What I’ll learn in the Leadership Network is how to make that happen. I think theatre education is … I know theatre education is important.”

— Natrona County High School theatre teacher Zach Schneider

National Arts Advocacy Day Grants

Student and adult leadership from the Kansas chapter of the International Thespian Society joining forces to visit Capitol Hill and advocate for arts education.

Student and adult leadership from the Kansas chapter of the International Thespian Society joining forces to visit Capitol Hill and advocate for arts education.

The Educational Theatre Foundation supports grants for teachers to attend National Arts Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. As part of this initiative, attendees receive advocacy training that prepares them to talk to elected officials on Capitol Hill about the importance of arts education.

“I was able to travel to Washington, D.C., for National Arts Advocacy Day to learn how to better promote the value of theatre in our schools and communities. Since that time, I’ve gone on to work with the Kansas Department of Education, where, along with other educators, I helped write the theatre curriculum that was adopted by the state’s board of education.”

— Jennifer Morgan-Beuchat, National Arts Advocacy Day Grant winner