Pasco parents amp up support for arts education
The Pasco County School Board has yet to make any concrete decisions about how to cut its 2011-12 budget to meet expected shortfalls.
That hasn't stopped supporters of the arts from organizing to defend the curriculum area that often gets eyed for reductions first because it's not required.
Hundreds of backers turned out for a town hall meeting on the district budget last week. Now they're launching a Facebook page, website and online petition to tout the value of music, art and drama in the schools, and to encourage the School Board to keep the programs intact.
"To consider the hole that would be in our kids lives if the arts are gone is unimaginable," organizer Pam Marron said in an e-mail. "It truly does make a difference, and it truly does keep kids engaged who might not be otherwise."
Board members have said they do not want to completely excise the arts or any other program that keeps students in school. They have not, however, ruled out any possible cuts at this time.