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For Immediate Release
March 10, 2006

IAAE Awards Ceremony held at State Capitol

Springfield, Ill. – The IAAE Awards ceremony, which recognizes art educators throughout the state, was held on March 9 at the State Capitol Rotunda, Springfield, Illinois. It was open to the public. The keynote speaker was the State Superintendent of Education, Randy Dunn and entertainment was provided by the University of Illinois Laboratory High School Madrigal Choir.

During the month of March, the Illinois Alliance for Arts Education will be recognizing outstanding service to the field of arts education. IAAE recognizes Arts Education in Theater, Dance, Visual Arts (media arts), and Music. Awards are presented in the following categories: Artist, Arts Educator, IAAE Organization, Industry, Public/Community Service, and School Administration.

“Arts education is an important component to learning alongside problem-solving,” said State Superintendent of Education Randy Dunn. “Educators have long-recognized that arts education plays a vital and essential role in overall child and student development.”

The third week of March is traditionally designated Illinois Arts Education Week in cooperation with the Illinois Alliance for Art Education (IAAE), the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), and the Governor's office. This year it will be on March 13-19, 2006.

As part of Illinois Arts Education Week, ISBE sponsored a poster contest in coordination with the Illinois Alliance for Arts Education and the Governor’s Office. The winner was Astri Snodgrass, who is a sophomore at St. Charles East High School, St. Charles CUSD #303. Her illustration appears on posters celebrating the 24th Annual Illinois Arts Education Week. A smaller version of the poster can be downloaded at along with more information about Illinois Arts Education Week.

IAAE established and supports a mission to ensure high-quality arts education for all Illinois K-12 students. The inclusion of the fine arts as a fundamental learning area, in learning standards, and in state assessment has been critical to arts education in Illinois schools.

In 1997, Illinois became one of the first states to develop and adopt learning standards. The IL Learning Standards define what all students in Illinois public schools should know and be able to do as a result of their elementary and secondary schooling in the content learning areas of English language arts, mathematics, science, social science, physical development and health, fine arts, and foreign languages.

Illinois State Board of Education
100 North First Street
Springfield, IL 62777