Award Year: 2015
Students are provided with the knowledge and skills necessary for cognitive, creative, emotional and social growth through sequential study, practice, and reflection, leading to personal and academic success.
- Black/African American: 29%
- White: 4%
- Hispanic: 65%
- Native American: 1%
- Two or more races: 1%
- ELL: 31%
- Economically Disadvantaged: %
When stepping into the halls of Blackshear Elementary Fine Arts Academy, one can’t help but notice the buzz around campus as students transition from one class to the next: kindergartners excitedly make their way upstairs toward the ballet studio, the third graders hold violins under their chins with pride, and the occasional fourth grader practices a Shakespearean monologue. Blackshear Elementary Fine Arts Academy, a National Blue Ribbon School, is the first elementary school in Austin ISD devoted to the arts. When the school embarked on this transformative journey, the words “Making the World Our Stage!” graced the marquee. Through vision and dedication, Blackshear’s metaphoric stage gives Austin’s public elementary students a space to perform academically, socially, and artistically every day.
Each morning, students focus on academic programs and then progress to an afternoon of experiential learning within a fine arts strand, which includes ballet, music, theater, and the graphic arts. As Friday approaches, students participate in specialty clubs that extend classroom learning through the incorporation of technology, exercise, health and nutrition, and the arts.
Blackshear’s neighborhood school status generates opportunities for all of its community stakeholders to play active roles in the students’ experiences and thus creates a more grounded, collective learning environment. The remarkable accomplishments of the Blackshear Elementary Fine Arts Academy have been realized through the mutual efforts of the staff, parents, administrators, and community members. This cooperative endeavor and philosophical approach offers Blackshear’s students a well-rounded educational experience through quality academic, enrichment, and physical exercise programs.