Fort Bend ISD wins 2021 TAEA District of Distinction Award for second consecutive year (9/9/2021)
Only top four percent of districts in state earned the honor
Fort Bend ISD (Sept. 9, 2021) – For the second consecutive year, Fort Bend ISD has been named one of 40 winners of the Texas Art Education Association (TAEA) 2021 District of Distinction Award.
The District received the honor for providing a well-rounded education that advocates and integrates visual arts curriculum to inspire creativity and build social emotional learning that connect learners to their community and beyond.
“We are extremely proud of the outstanding achievements of our Fine Arts Department in Fort Bend ISD,” Acting Superintendent Diana Sayavedra said. “We are fortunate to have some of the most talented students and dedicated instructors in the entire state.”
TAEA is the leading advocate for the visual arts in the state. The organization has previously honored outstanding TAEA members for work in their classrooms and districts. This is the third year that TAEA is honoring districts that meet rigorous criteria as evidenced from data.
“The arts, including visual arts, are fundamental to the FBISD curriculum,” FBISD Director of Fine Arts James Drew said. “Now more than ever, students need the arts to engage them and offer an expressive outlet where they can create beautiful works.”
“Receiving the TAEA District of Distinction Award for the second consecutive year affirms the quality of our District’s art education programs and supports our department’s vision to transform students’ lives through the pursuit of artistic excellence,” FBISD’s Visual Arts Coordinator Fahmi Khan said.
For the 2021 award, over 1,100 districts were eligible to apply. Each district submitted documentation demonstrating how they met the standards of a 14-point rubric over the 2020-2021 school year. Only 40 districts met the high standard and will receive the outstanding honor indicating they are in the top four percent in art education among districts in the state.
Fort Bend ISD is Texas’ eighth largest school district with about 77,000 students. It is one of the most diverse school districts in the nation, working and learning cohesively alongside families who speak more than 90 languages and dialects. FBISD currently has 81 campuses: 11 high schools, 15 middle schools, 51 elementary campuses and four specialty schools to address the academic and vocational interests of students. With more than 11,000 full-time employees and substitutes, the District is the largest employer in Fort Bend County. Fort Bend ISD is committed to its mission to inspire and equip all students to pursue futures beyond what they can imagine.
“Fort Bend ISD has set a high standard for visual arts advocacy, integrated visual arts curriculum, encouraged creativity, community participation and student growth,” Chair of the Administration and Supervision Division of TAEA Stacia Gower said. “The past school year, educators faced a great many challenges associated with constantly changing guidelines and instruction procedures as well as participation in contests and visual arts events. It is a true testament to our visual arts educators’ skill, dedication, and flexibility that the quality of their programs continued to be strong and comprehensive.”
Fort Bend ISD seeks to provide all students with a high-quality fine arts education that supports their academic, social, emotional, and creative development. This goal is achieved through a comprehensive performing and visual arts curriculum that provides a wide range of learning experiences and performance opportunities. Courses are offered in elementary music and art, as well as secondary courses in art, band, choir, orchestra, dance, and theatre.
Fine arts courses are structured in ways that promote the development of character, student leadership, and life-long learning. Each week, approximately 60,000 students district-wide participate in fine arts courses that offer them the opportunity to work collaboratively with their peers. Responsibility, teamwork, and good citizenship are fostered as students learn to depend on one other to achieve organizational goals.
Fort Bend ISD and other districts will be honored at the TAEA Administration & Supervision Division meeting and during the TAEA Fall Conference General Assembly on Friday, November 5, 2021.
District of Distinction has just completed its third year and is looking forward to increased participation going into the 2021-2022 school year. The Administration and Supervision division oversees the award program. The award honors school districts that are leading the way in the visual arts. The TAEA Administration and Supervision Division recognizes districts with outstanding leadership in promoting the arts in their district and community. TAEA wants to identify districts that are actively participating members in areas such as VASE, Junior VASE, and TEAM as a few examples. The organization also looks at field experiences, community service, and community exhibitions to name a few as part of the rigorous rubric for the award.
TAEA is the largest state professional organization for art educators in the United States. It is the mission of TAEA to promote quality visual arts education through leadership, advocacy, service, and professional development.