The Arts Education Demonstration Project

Arts education proponents and advocates firmly believe that understanding, learning, and appreciating the arts are vital components of every young person’s education and development. Without meaningful opportunities for progressive skill-building in and through the arts across age and grade levels, Marin’s students will not be fully prepared for healthy and productive participation in their adult lives and in their communities.

For several decades, however, funding for arts education programs has been progressively reduced or eliminated. The Marin Community Foundation believes that the reversal of decades of marginalization of arts education will require systemic change. This change will only result from informed leadership among multiple stakeholders; professional development opportunities for school administrators and teachers; technical assistance and program evaluation to develop rigorous educational curricula and opportunities for high achievement in each arts discipline; investment of resources to develop and nurture programs where resources are currently lacking; and networking, communications, and advocacy to create and sustain effective arts education.

The Arts Education Demonstration Project was developed as a five year initiative (2009-2014) in the Larkspur and Marin City/Sausalito School Districts, and Willow Creek Academy (a public charter school).

The goals of the Demonstration Project were to:

The videos and stories on this site summarize the results of this initiative and highlight the knowledge that was created and the practices and processes that can be adapted to work in most school settings. The site also provides links to research and resources to develop the infrastructure for dynamic, relevant and creative learning.

For more information on the project, additional research, or ways that the processes featured can be implemented into your school, please contact Larry Best, Program Director for the Arts at the Marin Community Foundation, at