The Texas Art Education Association honored Lake Dallas ISD for its exceptional leadership efforts in promoting the arts in July. With over a thousand districts eligible to apply for this award, LDISD is one of only 20 districts in the state recognized as a District of Distinction.
Both Lake Dallas High visual art teachers, Jeanette Murray and Lacy Almeida, are delighted with the official recognition for setting the standard for visual arts advocacy.
“This is a really good way to show how we reach a lot of kids and reach out into the community,” Almeida said. “We’re not as visible as the marching band or football team. We don’t have a lot of fans that come out and see our shows but we are present in the community and this award brings awareness to that.”
The importance of art education and the influence it has on the students continuously motivates both teachers in their quest to keep developing the visual arts program.
“Art is an outlet for so many kids that don’t feel like they belong anywhere else. They don’t feel like they fit in but they do fit in with us,” Murray said. “We’re in such a visual world too and I think understanding how to communicate properly through visual imagery is a big need.”
Murray is particularly grateful to the LDISD administration for fostering the students’ growth by providing them with comprehensive education and other opportunities for success.
“We needed the support of our principal,” she said. “And we got it. It was really a matter of ‘whatever you need, we’ll help you.’”
The visual art teachers are looking forward to more growth opportunities during the TAEA Conference 2019. They will also physically receive the District of Distinction award at the conference in Galveston this November.