Studio in a School was founded on the belief that all children deserve to reap the widely recognized benefits of a quality visual arts education. In its forty-year history, the Studio has been dedicated to this singular purpose with a mission to foster the creative and intellectual development of young people through quality visual arts programs directed by professional artists, as well as to collaborate with and enhance the capacity of those who provide and support arts programming for children and youth across New York City. Its New York City Schools Program delivers in-class instruction across multiple grades and in varied media, primarily for students who otherwise would not have access to a quality visual arts curriculum. It also maintains a robust program of professional development for educators, expanding their expertise while solidifying the important role of arts education within their schools. Meanwhile, its Studio Institute undertakes initiatives to identify and document best practices in arts education, including the integration of the arts with other areas of classroom study and new models for effective teacher training.
A 2017 grant from the Cultures of Resistance Network supported the Studio’s Long Term Program, which annually serves twenty-five schools and up to 10,000 students in Title I (high poverty) schools. Through an in-depth partnership lasting a minimum of five years, the Long Term Program establishes a children’s art studio in the school, transforming the school’s curriculum and culture. The grant was designated specifically to the Studio’s program at PS 256K in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, a high-poverty school where all students qualify for free or reduced price lunch. Before its partnership with the Studio began in 2016, PS 256 had not had an art teacher in over five years.