Region 6 Delta Sierra Counties


San Joaquin

San Joaquin County Superintendent
James A. Mousalimas

We are fortunate in San Joaquin County that our local districts and schools support the arts and the extraordinary value it provides our students. We know that music and the arts have a profound effect on students' achievement in mathematics, science, language arts and beyond. In fact, studies continue to show that students who participate in music and art programs outperform their peers in academic achievement and assessments. Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, said, 'I have seen the critical role that the arts play in stimulating creativity and in developing vital communities; the arts have a crucial impact on our economy and are an important catalyst for learning, discovery, and achievement in our country.'

Thank you to our students, teachers, administrators, parents and families for their continued support of music and the arts."

- James A. Mousalimas, San Joaquin County Superintendent of Schools

CONTACT: Sandra Wendell, Swendell [ahtsym] sjcoe [dhotsym] net

County Approach

For over 60 years the San Joaquin County Office of Education (SJCOE) has sponsored student musical events in our county. Our annual Honors Concerts provide the opportunity for gifted High School and Middle School musicians and vocalists to participate in an accelerated music program, culminating with our Honors Concert. Each concert provides the public the opportunity to experience a live performance. This year nearly 600 students representing 57 schools participated in these prestigious events showcasing Band, Choir and Orchestra students.

In addition, SJCOE provides an Artists-in-Schools residency program wherein professional artists teach standards-based lesson plans in their individual area of expertise. This visual and performing arts program provides a means of creativity and self-expression for students, something often lacking in California schools.

382 classrooms from 26 different school sites within the county took advantage of this program. In 2015/2016, 11,460 students received standards-based art lessons from an Artists-in-Schools professional artist. For many students this may have been their only opportunity to experience the arts. SJCOE continues to reach out to the community by offering professional development opportunities for teachers and community members. For more information on the San Joaquin County Office of Education Visual and Performing Arts programs, visit their website:

San Joaquin County Office of Education looks forward to continuing to support arts education and showcase the arts and its benefits in our community.




Stanislaus County Superintendent 
Tom Changnon

“It’s been said that ‘Art has the role in education of helping children become like themselves instead of like everyone else.’ Exposing young people to arts education can have a big impact on their development – it helps foster creative thinking, problem solving, decision making and individual responsibility.

Participation in arts education is a key component in improving learning throughout all academic areas. Evidence of its effectiveness in reducing student dropouts, raising student attendance, developing better team players, fostering a love for learning, enhancing student creativity, and producing a better prepared citizen for the future is documented in numerous studies.

On behalf of all students, the Stanislaus County Office of Education continues to support and promote the arts in education.”

- Tom Changnon, Stanislaus County Superintendent of Schools

CONTACT: Amy Zschaber, Region 6 Arts Lead, abultena [ahtsym] stancoe [dhotsym] org

County Approach

The Stanislaus County Office of Education (SCOE) is committed to ensuring that every child in the county experiences a comprehensive curriculum. A high-quality education in the arts, including the subject areas of dance, music, theatre, and the visual arts, is an integral component of a comprehensive approach. The arts teach our children more than just how to dance, sing, act, or paint; they facilitate students’ learning in all subject areas and foster creative thinking, problem solving, decision making, individual responsibility, and teamwork. The arts in education better prepare students for college and career by giving them the necessary skills to be successful and competitive in today’s global market.

During the 2009-2010 school year, SCOE assembled the Stanislaus County Arts Education Leadership Team, including parents, teachers, site and district administrators, and representatives from arts organizations and a variety of SCOE programs. The team was tasked with creating a comprehensive, five-year strategic plan that would chart the course for SCOE to actively support schools and districts in their efforts to provide high-quality arts education for all students. The Stanislaus County Arts Education Master Plan guides the support of arts education in the County. The plan details why and how SCOE will support an education in which students accrue quality knowledge of the arts and have creative experiences from preschool through their senior year of high school, both within and outside the school day. This plan has guided the opportunities provided to students, teachers, and administrators over the past three years.

As a result of the Stanislaus County Arts Education Master Plan, our work in the county is focused on:

  • Organizing resources and advocating for arts education, including organizing events for advocating publicly for whole child education; publicizing events, opportunities, and resources for Arts Education in the county through our Visual and Performing Arts website

  • Creating alliances and working effectively with community partners to increase the opportunities for students and teachers across the county. These partnerships have resulted in a strengthening arts integration education through Gallo Center for the Arts Youth Education Program, Kennedy Partners in Education, and Creativity at the Core, as well as the development of the Modesto State Theatre Youth Education Program, among others. These partnerships have increased access for students by recognizing the financial challenges faced by local schools and securing ongoing grant funding to help with transportation, off-set ticket costs, and creating professional development opportunities for teachers.

  • Developing leadership and capacity for quality arts education in county schools and districts. Countywide leadership continues to be developed through the regularly convening Arts Education Leadership Team and ongoing advocacy by SCOE for quality arts education to support student learning and engagement. Each year the County hosts the Region 6 Arts Forum, bringing together educators to deliver professional development for teachers that focus on the integration of the arts with other subject areas, as well as explicit arts instruction strategies for arts specialists. This professional development supports teachers as they move to the Common Core State Standards.

Support Systems and Partnerships

The SCOE Foundation operates an after-school/summer performing arts program, YES (Youth Entertainment Stage) Company. The YES Company brings together County youth from diverse ethnic, academic, geographic, and socio-economic backgrounds. This multifaceted youth theatre program introduces students to the performing arts through intensive summer theatrical training and year-round exposure to performance and the arts. The YES Company brings youth, grades 7-12, together to gain a sense of community through trust, acceptance, and celebration of their differences as they work toward a common goal.



Tuolumne County Superintendent
Marguerite Bulkin

"Arts have been important and have played a significant role in Tuolumne County and in our schools for many years. Our county has been the recipient of a variety of arts grants that have provided strong professional development in the four arts disciplines. Each school in the county has one or more arts specialists. Our goal in Tuolumne County is to move forward and institutionalize the concept of arts as a core curriculum. To that extent, the County Superintendent of Schools Office has facilitated the development and implementation of comprehensive arts education plans in every elementary district and supported high schools in developing standards-based arts classes. With the seed planted, quality arts education is flourishing in Tuolumne County."

- Marguerite Bulkin, Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools

Contacts:  Marguerite Bulkin, mbulkin [ahtsym] tcsos [dhotsym] us
               Cathy Parker, cparker [ahtsym] tcsos [dhotsym] us

County Approach

Tuolumne County school teachers benefit from a historically strong community partnership with the Tuolumne County Arts Alliance to provide arts education for students and professional development for teachers. Dedicated to bringing the arts to all ages ARTS-Reach to Schools (ARTS) is a 27-year Partnership with the Tuolumne County Arts Alliance, The Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools Office and Tuolumne County’s schools. It is an Arts Education program that brings artists in dance, theater, visual art and music into classrooms. All lessons are fully aligned with California’s curriculum for the arts and its core academic subjects. Guest artists, with supplies and instruments, visit classrooms to inspire and share knowledge and love of the arts with many age groups. ARTS-Reach to Schools has been recognized numerous times as an exemplary arts education program.

Artists in Schools (AIS) is a California Arts Council (CAC) matching grant program (the selected schools match the CAC grants), designed to support high-quality artists in residency in schools for use with class-time, or after school programs. For the past 5 years, the Tuolumne County Arts Alliance has funded and placed a total of six artists and at least ten guest artists in four local schools. These residencies bring the arts to school age children and empower classroom teachers to teach the arts, while they employ local artists. The residencies last at least 12 weeks and many times much longer. The Arts Alliance’s Educational Director serves as the Coordinator of the AIS Grant at the local level.

Support Systems and Partnerships

In 1990, The Symphony of the Sierras held its first school assembly performance at Curtis Creek Elementary School to the wild enthusiasm of students, teachers and parents. This program continues today with music students, mainly from 4th and 5th grade classes, and music students giving a yearly concert held at Sonora High School. Additionally, the County Schools Office coordinates an annual choir and band concert with area schools.

The Annual Student Art Show features students throughout the county. This is a kindergarten through 12th grade student art show. Two age groups, K through 6th and 7th through 12th grade students submit art with the help of their teachers. The art of the 7th-12th graders is judged and ribbons are awarded. The work awarded Best in Show is framed and hung in the Supervisors’ Lobby at the County Court House. The show is held at the TUOLUMNE COUNTY ARTS ALLIANCE’S GEORGE POST COMMUNITY GALLERY on the Historic Dome Campus.

Summer Arts Camp at Columbia State Park is an exciting, intensive five day camp for children ages 7 to 12. Ninety campers are guided through a variety of visual arts, music, theater, dance and culture, by professional artists of all disciplines. In addition, the Tuolumne County Arts Alliance created KASA (Kids’ Art Studies Academy) KAMPS for children ages 7 – 12, held during spring and summer breaks.
The Tuolumne County Superintendents of Schools supports professional development for all teachers in providing an “ART MART” for teachers. These after school workshops are designed to provide make-n-take art projects for teachers to implement in their classroom, complimenting State standards.

Finally, in partnership with the Tuolumne County Arts Council, our county’s high school students participate in the nationally recognized Poetry Outloud Contest each year. We are very proud that our local finalist went on to win the State title in 2015.

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