Board of Directors Statement on
Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA)
At a time of hard-fought national recommitment to the principle of justice for all people, Young Audiences of Virginia Inc. (doing business as Arts for Learning, the Virginia Affiliate of Young Audiences) declares its commitment to inclusion, diversity, equity, and access in all aspects of its mission and activities and at all levels of the organization.
The members of the Board of Directors believe in inclusion and support the election or hiring of diverse candidates to work in and with the organization. The board believes that having directors, staff, and performing/teaching artists of diverse race, socioeconomic status, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, culture, religious beliefs, ethnicity, and (dis)ability status (bringing varied skills, perspectives, and experiences) contributes to a balanced and effective organization, well-positioned to address the changing needs of the communities and children we serve.
The Board seeks to maintain an organizational culture where differences are welcomed, where different viewpoints are respectfully heard, and where each individual feels included and appreciated. The organization values diversity and equity in programming, in order to provide services that are embracing, inclusive, and culturally responsive. The Board, staff, and artists commit to challenging and responding to bias, harassment, or discrimination wherever they are detected.
Arts for Learning believes that all children deserve the right to an education that fosters their unique talents and allows them to experience and explore the arts. Indeed, education in the arts and humanities offers the best avenue for improved critical thinking, promoting understanding, and then ameliorating past injustices that have led to ongoing oppression and pain. Learners of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds should feel validated, included, and nurtured by the efforts of Arts for Learning. Knowing that spiritual growth and awareness require constant work, the organization commits to self-examination as a permanent part of its mission. Arts for Learning likewise enthusiastically joins with a national coalition of arts education organizations in endorsing the following shared statement of belief:
It is imperative that all students have access to an equitable delivery of arts education that includes dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts that supports their educational, social, and emotional well-being, taught by certified professional arts educators in partnership with community arts providers.