The Pennsylvania Art Education Association (PAEA) is proud to recognize the Solanco School District Visual Arts Department for its commitment to visual arts education with the endorsement of Outstanding Visual Arts Community 2022. PAEA empowers its members to transform their practices, students, colleagues, and communities to build a strong art education culture and citizenry.

Districts receiving this endorsement demonstrate the importance of their visual arts programs with:

Rigorous and Inclusive Programs: Arts programs demonstrate rigor using standards-based curricula taught at every level by highly qualified and certified art educators.

Highly Accessible Programs: Art programs are offered to all students at every level of education with a sustainable budget for the visual arts.

Highly Visible Programs: Schools and districts identify their programmatic accomplishments, curriculum for all levels, art staff, mission statements, and arts events using their school websites and social media.

Tyler Allen, Reunion, pastel on paper

Students in the Solanco School District celebrate the importance of a well-rounded education with opportunities to engage in arts education courses at all grade levels. These opportunities prepare students for robust futures in the creative industries as well as prepare them for skills needed across all aspects of life such as problem-solving, flexible mindsets, team and collaboration skills, creativity, and more. These are the cognitive skills young people will need to find their place in a globally competitive workforce. The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reports that the arts and culture sector is a $699 billion industry, which represents 4.3% of the nation’s GDP—a larger share of the economy than transportation and agriculture. The nonprofit arts industry alone generates $135 billion in economic activity annually (spending by organizations and their audiences), supports 4.1 million jobs, and generates $22.3 billion in government revenue (Americans for the Arts, 2015). Technology innovations such as big data, data analytics, and visualization will simply increase the importance of visual and spatial learning skills.

Caroline Drumm, Comfort and Joy, pastel on paper

Solanco Visual Arts Department Chair, Candace Rakers, said, “We are honored that the Pennsylvania Art Education Association has awarded the Solanco School District with the distinction of Outstanding Visual Arts Community, 2022. This award reflects the long-established dedication and expertise of Solanco visual arts educators, the passion and perseverance of Solanco artists, and the strong commitment of the Solanco School District to the arts. Over the past twenty years, the outstanding achievements of Solanco visual artists have been impressive: over one million dollars in scholarships to the most competitive visual arts programs in the U.S., over 800 regional awards in the visual arts, 25 national awards in the visual arts, exhibitions of work in prestigious museums and galleries in New York City, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Lancaster, as well as the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Capitol, and consistent achievement of the highest scores on the Advanced Placement Art and Design Exam. Solanco visual arts graduates thrive in careers in the arts as art directors in Global 500 companies, designers in the fashion/art/design industries, curators and educators in prestigious museums, architects, fine artists, and K-12 visual arts educators. Solanco artists, Solanco visual arts educators, and the entire Solanco community can be exceptionally proud of the rich, enduring history of Solanco’s distinguished achievements in the visual arts.”

The Pennsylvania Art Education Association commended the Solanco School District for its active role in providing outstanding arts education opportunities for students and receiving the endorsement of Outstanding Visual Arts Community 2022. Congratulations!