Sample Letter - U.S. Secretary of Education

(your address)

The Honorable Margaret Spellings
U.S. Secretary of Education
400 Maryland Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20202

I am the parent of a __ grader at (name of school) in (your city), (your state). I am concerned that s/he is not getting a strong enough education in the arts.

The arts are a powerful set of disciplines to use in the effort to "leave no child behind," as you and the President say. Research studies (Champions of Change, 1999) show that students with high levels of involvement in the arts improve their performance at school in many ways, and that the arts are also a means of reaching students not currently being reached, such as those at-risk students. The arts help narrow the gap between low socioeconomic status (SES) students who are not highly involved in the arts and their higher SES peers. The arts bring families, communities, and schools together through a common sense of pride.

I want to thank you for your support of the national Arts Education Partnership and the Department's other strong work in arts education. Please continue to use the prominence of the U.S. Department of Education to support arts-based programming and education for our nation's youth. Please assist school districts in providing a quality education in the arts based on challenging standards.

Thank you for all that you do on behalf of the people of America.

(sign and print your name)