Program: Access to Arts
Area of Work: Arts
Grant Purpose: Education Programs
As the largest cultural institution in Brooklyn, the Brooklyn Museum offers free admission to more than 650,000 visitors a year, with nearly 40% of visitors self-identifying as people of color, approximately 60% under the age of 45, and many first-time museum visitors. Its collections and exhibitions are globally. heralded, and while a destination for citywide, national and audiences, the Museum is dedicated to serving its neighbors through both access and representation.
Purpose: To support art education programs, including School Programs, Teen Programs and Family & Community Programs.
Education is one of the core pillars of the Brooklyn Museum’s mission. The Museum is particularly committed to youth in neighboring communities, where nearly half of children live below the poverty line, less than half complete high school, and college readiness is 0–5%. The school district in which it is located is one of the most “arts-poor” school districts in the State. The Museum serves as one of the borough’s leading arts educators — and “Brooklyn’s Largest Classroom” — providing services to over 50,000 students. In addition to programs for youth, the Museum provides professional development for teachers to support training around content-aligned strategies and tools for arts integration, as well as programs for seniors, other adults, and teens.
The Museum’s School Programs have grown by 50% in the last few years, reaching students and teachers from more than 600 schools through guided gallery visits, self-guided gallery visits and intensive school partnerships. During the 2018/2019 school year, the Museum served close to 57,000 children, teens, adults, teachers and caregivers. Public programs offerings have quadrupled during this time. The Museum expanded its reach by engaging school principals in conversations around structural inequity in arts education and how the Museum and school leaders can work collectively to close the gap. The Museum also invested more resources into professional development for teachers to support training, strategies and tools for arts integration with subjects including social studies, math, science, geography and English Language Arts. Beyond schools, the Museum expanded its programs for adults with Alzheimer’s and other cognitive impairments, and launched a new visual art observation program with medical students and professors at SUNY Downstate Medical Center to use art as a way to build diagnostic and communications skills and to relieve stress and promote healing.