Editor's Note: The following release was submitted by the Hendrick Hudson Community Educational Foundation. If you would like to post your news to Patch, click here.
Many of us are not surprised when our public schools opt to cut art programs as a means to save money and resources, especially in the current economic environment.
This is not the case at Blue Mountain Middle School – thanks to the persistence and passion of two art teachers, Paul Gioacchini and Logan Krause, and the commitment of the Hendrick Hudson Community Educational Foundation.
“Art is primarily supply and resource based, and that is what makes it an easy target when trimming budgets. As the cost of programs rise, we needed to be creative and find the resources somewhere,” explains Mr. Gioacchini.
Said Mrs. Krause: “We’ve had some great innovative ideas that need funding. Ideas that will give our students a greater depth into exploring today’s world of visual arts and technology. We’ve been very lucky to have a supportive Administration, and especially the HHCEF to turn to and make it happen.”
This past spring, the HHCEF granted the middle school’s art department $7,000 to purchase cameras and equipment for a new Digital Photography course, as well as expand the computer graphics program to include electives in Game Design, Digital Modeling, and Graphic Design.
These art classes are offered in addition to the art curriculum, electives that are not commonly offered even at the high school level in many districts. Designed to enhance critical thinking and problem solving skills, the courses also reinforce math and science as they relate to everyday applications.
As for their students’ reaction to the new offerings, Mr. Gioacchini concludes, “We’re both pleased at how engaged they are in their work and how they are collaborating with each other. We know times are tough, but we’re so grateful that we’re able to give our students these amazing opportunities.”
The Hendrick Hudson Community Educational Foundation, Inc. is an independent, community-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, existing for the purposes of raising and granting funds in support of educational activities that benefit the citizens residing within the boundaries of the Hendrick HudsonSchool District. Since 1995, the Foundation has awarded over $200,000 in grants and scholarships. HHCEF is funded solely by contributions from the community and does not receive financial support from the school district. To learn more about HHCEF, visit www.hhcef.org.