The Live Oak Education Foundation strives to create ample hands-on artistic opportunities for our elementary and middle school students, so that all can explore their self-expression and creativity. As part of this effort, the Foundation has supported teachers gaining vital professional development experience in the arts for many years. This includes paying for 14 teachers to take part in week-long Summer Arts Institutes offered through Arts Council Santa Cruz County and the Santa Cruz County Office of Education. Thanks to efforts by the Foundation (in partnership with the Arts Council and the Live Oak School District’s Parcel Tax Committee), hands-on visual arts programming was expanded to TK-3rd graders at our three local elementary schools during the 2019-20 school year. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 and resulting restrictions, this was delayed until Winter 2021 for the 2020-21 school year. The Foundation also provides funding for the Shoreline Middle School’s arts program to buy supplies and materials. We also fund Family Arts Nights (through Arts Council) to engage families together in visual and performing arts experiences. In the future, we hope to provide an after-school theater arts
program for Shoreline Middle School students.
Prior to the school closures for COVID-19, the Live Oak School District provided an elementary music teacher that was shared among the three schools. Unfortunately, that position was cut due to the budget crisis and limitations resulting from the pandemic. However, we know this program will return and we will continue to invest in it to ensure all Live Oak students have access to hands-on music education so that their musical sensibilities can thrive. Shoreline Middle School’s music program has continued during the pandemic and we continue to support that program in collaboration with their music teacher. In the future, we hope to support trips to the Santa Cruz Symphony for all 4th and 5th graders at Del Mar, Green Acres, and Live Oak elementary schools.