Two-year study showcases strength of arts education programming provided by cultural sector in Palm Beach County


The Cultural Council of Palm Beach County has released new data for its two-year survey that measures the impact of the cultural sector on arts education in the county.

Conducted by Surale Phillips of Decision Support Partners and commissioned by the Cultural Council, the Arts and Cultural Education Snapshot 2.0 collected information from 55 nonprofit cultural organizations (including arts-, sciences- and humanities-based institutions) in Palm Beach County about their educational programming during the 2016-17 and 2017-18 school years.

According to the survey, these 55 cultural organizations:

  • Contributed $22.7 million in educational programming to district schools
  • Offered more than 760,000 educational experiences to students in district schools
  • Offered more than 28,000 professional development experiences to teachers
  • Served 94 percent of district schools and over 300 other learning locations in the county
  • Tracked nearly 100,000 volunteer hours to deliver cultural programming to district schools

According to the study, Florida students who don’t pass the FCAT in reading or math (or receive low-performing scores) must take intense remedial courses in place of arts classes. High school arts courses count as electives, and students that struggle academically have fewer chances to take arts classes. To counter this decline in arts education opportunities, Palm Beach County cultural organizations play a pivotal role in ensuring students in district schools receive arts and cultural experiences.

“Arts education significantly impacts Palm Beach County students – and our entire community,” said Dave Lawrence, the Cultural Council’s president & CEO. “This comprehensive survey is the first of its kind, and provides strong evidence that the arts are crucial for students and teachers. We hope to use these results to further engage with the Palm Beach County School District and with potential donors and funders that share in our vision and who can help support that these efforts will continue in the future.”

For more information on the Arts and Cultural Education Snapshot 2.0, read the complete survey findings here.

*updated Sept. 30, 2019 from original news release “Cultural Council of Palm Beach County Publishes Arts Education Survey”


Hannah Deadman-Arnst
Phone: (561) 471-1602