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Connected Arts Networks - A New EdTA Partnership



EdTA is excited to announce a new partnership with the National Art Education Association, the National Association for Music Education, the National Dance Education Organization and New York City Public Schools- the Connected Arts Networks project! 

The CAN project will focus on rich professional development for educators through professional learning communities focused on teacher practice, leadership and agency across three areas:

- Equity, Diversity and Inclusion 
- Social and Emotional Learning 
- Educator Leadership 

The CAN grant project is aligned with the EdTA Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Strategic Plan and recent work to build an SEL Lesson Plan Library model lesson plan embedded with SEL instruction.   The project will begin in October 2021 and continue through September of 2026 spanning the following school years:

- 2021-2022 (Start up, Orientation, Training and Implementation)
- 2022-2023 (First Professional Learning Community Cohort trains and practices)
- 2023-2024 (Second layer of Professional Learning Communities formed)
- 2024-2025 (Professional Learning Communities Deepen)
- 2025-2026 (Sustainability, Documentation & Dissemination)

Bookmark this page and stop back often for project updates, toolkits and continuing information.  Program activities for this project are fully funded through the U.S. Department of Education’s Assistance for Arts Education Program, projected for a total of $8,515,648.00 over five years to be shared across the grant partner organizations.

CAN Theatre Teacher Leader Team

After weeks of interviews, the Educational Theatre Association is thrilled to announce the Connected Arts Network Theatre Teacher Leader Team who will serve as the first cohort in this nationwide project with a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion, social and emotional learning and teacher leadership through the lens of professional learning communities.  The team is comprised of a mix of elementary, middle school and high school theatre educators from across the nation representing diverse teaching situations from rural to small village to suburban to urban settings.  Congratulations to the team and to the team leader, Content Manager Joshua Rashon Streeter. 

EdTA Theatre Team by Region
EdTA Theatre Team by Area Type

Connected Arts Networks:  Leveraging Arts Learning Communities for Teacher Leadership and Student Achievement 

The Educational Theatre Association serves as the Theatre partners for the Connected Arts Networks Project, joining the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), the National Dance Education Organization (NDEO) and the New York City Public School district in this initiative led by the National Art Education Association. 

Connected Arts Networks (CAN), a five-year project to create nationwide virtual Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) with educators in visual arts, music, theater, dance and media arts. The overarching vision for CAN is to build a sustainable model of professional learning for arts educators which will strengthen their pedagogy and instruction and leadership skills in order to better serve students. This project is modeled after the successful structure of the PLC program in New York City, initiated by the Office of Arts and Special Projects (OASP), another partnering organization.   


Congratulations to the Team


Podcast and Tools to Use

Connected Arts Networks (CAN)

Podcast Series with The Creativity Department 

The Connected Arts Network project now offers informative podcasts and other tools in support of social and emotional learning and diversity equity and inclusion goals for theatre arts education created by the National Arts Education Association in partnership with the Educational Theatre Association, the National Dance Education Organization, the National Association for Music Education and

NYC Department of Education Office of Arts and Special Projects .. 

Don’t miss the first in a multi-episode collaborative series where NAEA and The Creativity Department will be joined by Oral Historian Dr. Mi’Jan Celie Tho-Biaz in conversation with teacher leaders. Together they will dive deeply into topics such as ED&I, SEL, and Leadership with CAN teachers and leaders! Enjoy the first two conversations, episode 1 featuring Kim Hoj, Dance and Career Technical Education Teacher, and Jared Cassedy, Performing Arts Coordinator and Conductor of the Lexington High School Wind Ensemble about the importance of PLCs; and episode 2 featuring Amber Arnod, Fine Arts Instructional Coach, and Tina Barrone, Theatre Teacher.


Read about beneficial PLC experiences from current CAN Teacher Leaders in the digital handout created for CAN Professional Learning Communities Quarterly Workshop held in November. Download the handout here. https://arteducators-prod.s3.amazonaws.com/documents/2033/56d6ff05-f51d-4789-be41-c63b3058bb62.pdf?1667309022

Special thanks to Davis Publications for their support on this project.


The contents of this podcast were developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Assistance for Arts Education Program. However, the contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.