EdTA’s office will be closed from Saturday, December 23 through Monday, January 1. Happy Holidays to all!

School Theatre Advocacy

The Educational Theatre Association is the voice of theatre education.

From the local to the federal level, EdTA engages in ongoing work to affirm the professionalism of theatre educators and the value of arts education. We show up on behalf of students and teachers in national arts education working groups, legislative offices, policy events, advocacy campaigns, and more. And we provide a wealth of resources for members to advocate for our mission – and their own theatre programs.

Did You Know?

95% of school administrators believe that theatre experiences improve students’ overall academic skills. 2012 EdTA-Utah State University Survey of Theatre Education Programs in U.S. High Schools
As of 2020, The last comprehensive national arts education report by the U.S. Department of Education is over 10 years old. Americans for the Arts
Audience-based participation in the arts and personal participation in creating art are both linked to higher levels of civic engagement and social tolerance. Journal of Civil Society, Leroux and Bernadska, 2019
Arts education helps to increase students’ ability to manage behavior, make decisions, and cultivate a positive concept of the self. William Penn Foundation, Holochwost, Palmer Wolf, Fisher, & O’Grady, 2016
44 states require districts or schools to offer arts instruction at the elementary, middle, and high school level, but only 32 states define the arts in statute or code as a core or academic subject. National Center for Education Statistics, 2020
At-risk middle school students engaged in an after-school musical theatre program demonstrate improved confidence, creativity, resiliency, responsibility, collaboration, and sense of community. Capturing Student and Teacher Creative Growth through the After-School JumpStart Theatre Program, Year Two Report, 2017
High school students who earn multiple arts credits are five times more likely to graduate than students with low involvement in the arts. National Endowment for the Arts: The Arts and Achievement in At-Risk Youth, 2012
Students attending live performances of theater (i.e., field trips and school performances) demonstrated higher levels of social emotional skills, and stronger command of the plot and vocabulary of the play they attended, versus viewing movie adaptations of the same plays. Educational Researcher, 2018
“An arts education has been shown to raise students’ ability to critique themselves, their willingness to experiment, their ability to reflect, and also to learn from mistakes.” Arts Education Policy Review; Robinson, 2013

Come to Capitol Hill!

EdTA will host Advocacy Day in Washington, DC, July 18-19, 2023. Join us in advocating for the value of theatre education! Following a day of training workshops, EdTA’s delegation will head to Capitol Hill to meet with federal legislators.

Advocacy Leadership Network

The Advocacy Leadership Network is a grassroots group that promotes and advocates for K-12 theatre education to school board members, administrators, legislators, and other critical decision makers.

Anyone can participate, so lend your voice to our cause!

Issues and Positions

As the leading advocate for school theatre, EdTA supports its members – and the field – by galvanizing support around key issues affecting theatre education. Get familiar with those core topics and our stance on them.

Research and Reports

Theatre education facts and data at your fingertips!

Data can support your advocacy efforts. Discover helpful resources. 

State Advocacy Success: Nebraska Theatre In Our Schools Day

Advocate in Your Area

Get involved!

EdTA and its members advocate for school theatre at all levels: federal, state, and local. Discover tips and tactics to speak up for your theatre program.

News and Guides for Advocates

Teaching Theatre 2012

Landscape Survey

This series of short articles supplements the Fall 2012 Teaching Theatre (volume 24, number one) report…

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Our Affiliations and Partners

Advocacy Help

Have an advocacy need or a question about these tools? Wondering about policy, legislation, or issues in your region, state, or district? Contact us, and we’ll connect you to an advocate.