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The arts are a function of being human, as they have been in every culture across time. Arts education in DC Public Schools cultivates each student’s ability to create and empowers them to use their voice with courage. DCPS Arts develops the critical problem solving and communication skills of students that are vital in creating today’s complex society. The Framework for Arts Learning is a curriculum that encompasses all arts disciplines, aligning student investigations and experiences from the youngest school age to graduation. Throughout their time in DCPS, students increase their ability to address complex issues and to explore multiple perspectives through the arts. Students of DCPS arts education will be innovative in their approach to contemporary society’s most pressing issues, as they become savvy consumers and producers of culture.


Core Beliefs

Arts education is an integral part of developing students’ ability to succeed across disciplines.

  • The arts are a form of communication.

  • The arts teach students to trust their own decision-making process.

  • The arts demonstrate the role of ambiguity in the process of innovation.

  • The arts are a reaction to or demonstration of culture and society.

  • Effective arts education requires the commitment of schools and communities to support it as integral to the educational experience.

  • Arts education provides students with opportunities to demonstrate their understanding of complex issues in personally relevant ways.

  • The arts engage students in their own learning through the process of creation.


DCPS Arts Canvas Page contains all curriculum, teaching resources, scope & sequences, and framework for our teachers.

Arts Framework

In the Framework for Arts Learning, students engage with themes across developmental stages, revisiting ideas as they progress and grow through arts learning.

Scope & Sequence

DCPS Arts 2020-2021 Scope & Sequence are written specifically based on the Arts Framework, unit themes, related units, National Arts Standards, and SEAD goals. You will also find the Achievement Guide in the document. 

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