artsBASICS: Catalyst to the Creation of the Creative Arts Academy of the Quad Cities
Nearly two years ago, Superintendent Art Tate, under the direction of the Davenport Community School Board created a committee called the “District of Distinction”. Area educators, leaders, parents and upporters were in an action planning process, to create new educational models designed to increase student engagement, allow students a deeper experience based on interests and attract new families to the district.
artsBASICS Co-Directors and members helped drive the concept of the CAA to the top of the “District of Distinction” list. artsBASICS Co-Directors, Joel & Diane Franken, spearheaded the school concept with countless support gathering meetings with the Quad Cities various business and non-profit organizations. That number now reaches over fifty strong.
At “D of D” meetings it was Joel Franken who kept the magnet school idea moving forward with the help of a large interested sub-committee which included many artsBASICS members.
As specifics about the school were required to be researched and developed, Co-Director Diane Franken chaired the Curriculum and Student Support Committees.
artsBASICS Chairperson, Connie Bracey and Treasurer, Dorian Byrd, were instrumental in writing the Dance Curriculum. Connie also assisted on the Student Support Committee because of her guidance background.
Through artsBASICS member Clint Balsar’s vision, the media pieces were developed by the CAA sub-committee. These pieces of media and their message help sell the school’s concept.
Joel has since become the Director of the Creative Arts Academy of the Quad Cities with Clint as the Communication and Media Arts Chair and Connie as the Integrated Arts Teacher.
As staff is added to the CAA, artsBASICS personnel will also assist in the staff development of the “Integrated Arts” model championed by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.