At noon on Dec. 13, Ernest Disney-Britton, director of grant services at the Arts Council of Indianapolis, stepped up to the podium at the Artsgarden to announce the launch of the IndyArtsEd.org website.
The announcement took place as a prologue to the Mistletoe Festival, an orchestral performance by Center for Inquiry Schools.
“Beginning today, central Indiana teachers and parents are going to have 24/7 access to an online directory that offers hundreds of arts education offerings for your kids,” said Disney-Britton. “So when a teacher is doing their lessons at 11 p.m. at night because they can’t do it during the school day, they’ll be able to go online, and access programs from 25+ organizations beginning right now.”
The new website, made possible by an $80,000 grant from the Glick Fund, acts as an online directory for arts and cultural services provided by over 25 organizations in Indianapolis. These range from Freetown Village, Inc. to Dance Kaleidoscope, and the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.
Nathan Tuttle, principal of the Edison School for the Arts, describes the website as a “kind of Angie’s List of opportunities.”
“I had the opportunity at the early onset of this website where all the leaders of all the local organizations in Indianapolis in the local arts organizations came together,” said Tuttle. “We were wondering how we could create a menu of items that teachers in schools could easily access and that arts organizations could put their information into.”
The website offers organizations the opportunity to input everything they have to offer school children and communities into the website quickly and easily.
“[They] put all of the parameters around that whether they offer transportation or no transportation, what’s their seating capacity; what days of the week so on. Then building administrators, teachers who are looking for outside performances, put in the parameters of what they’re looking for and gives you back your best results whether you need something grant funded or need transportation provided,” said Tuttle.
One of the participating organizations is the Eiteljorg Museum.
“At the Eiteljorg we’re so excited to be part of this," says Martha Hill, vice President for public programs and Beeler family director of education “It’s really going to help us expand our reach and reach many more educators and parents and families in Central Indiana and let them know what kind of programs, tours, and artists experiences we have at the Eiteljorg and what kind of art experiences we can take out into the schools.”
Center for Inquiry School 2 principal Andrea Hundley is also excited about what Indyartsed.org will make possible for the kids in her school.
“This is going to provide us with the ability to expand field trips and integration opportunities for our kids,” she said. “We’ll be able to expose our kids to wonderful artists and award-winning dancers, take them on field trips to studios, we’ll be able to integrate things like beat-boxing into math—that’s one of the opportunities—how great is that?”