The following is a letter from Principal Bryant regarding funding for the Fillmore Art Center for next year (Click here to view background information in the issue.)…
Dear Stoddert Families:
I’m writing to affirm my support for the Fillmore Arts Program, and to give you a status report on our efforts in that regard. The reasons that I support Fillmore are programmatic as well as practical.
Programmatically, the Fillmore program offers our students a much wider range of fine arts experiences than we will be able to provide here on our Stoddert campus. If the Fillmore program is unable to continue, we will provide in-house instruction in general music instruction and art, but we will not be able to allocate funding for the wider range of fine arts experiences that are offered at Fillmore.
The practical reason that I support the Fillmore program is simply space, or lack of it. As you are aware, we are already using every square inch of space at Stoddert, and it will be a great challenge to create space for music and art classrooms. Based upon my prior experience as a music educator and a fine arts supervisor, I can tell you that music or art “on a cart” is not conducive to quality instruction.
The principals of the schools which currently support Fillmore are engaged in ongoing conversations to brainstorm options and strategies for maintaining the Fillmore program, and to develop plans to provide high quality school-based music and art programs in the event that the Fillmore program is not maintained. I was in conversations with my fellow principals as late as 9:45 pm yesterday evening, and as early as 5:05 am this morning.
In addition, I’ve had conversations and strategy discussions with Friends of Fillmore president John Claud, Chancellor’s Parent Cabinet member Andre Carter, PTO co-president Maria O’Donnell, and with the members of our Local School Advisory Team. All of these fine people share my support of the Fillmore program. I have also joined many of you in expressing my concerns to Council Member Mary Cheh, who is a strong advocate for our school.
I appreciate all the efforts our Stoddert community is making to support Fillmore, and I’ll keep you updated with any future developments.