learn / 2015

Hollywood HEART: Arts in the Classroom

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by Hollywood HEART

Hollywood HEART would like to sustain and build on its pilot program creating arts-enriched learning environments for high school students in low-income and underserved communities. We are currently partnering with LA High School to transform their campus through in-class and after-school arts workshops. We seek funding to sustain our program at LA High School and to launch new partnerships; potential candidates include Fairfax and Venice High Schools.


In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • LAUSD

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Engage residents and stakeholders
  • Implement a pilot or new project
  • Expand a pilot or a program

How will your proposal improve the following “Learn” metrics?

  • Percent of community college students completing a certificate, degree, or transfer-related program in six years
  • Youth unemployment and underemployment
  • District-wide graduation rates
  • HS student proficiency in English & Language Arts and Math
  • Academic Performance Index* scores
  • College matriculation rates
  • Student education pipeline (an integrated network of pre-schools, K-12 institutions, and higher education systems that prepares students for seamless transitions between high school, higher ed

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to learn.

Hollywood HEART is dedicated to building the best future for our young people, regardless of the challenges they face. If our city is to thrive in 2050, we must educate our youth to become innovative thinkers and problem solvers, to move comfortably between art and technology, and to have the skills and perseverance to succeed in the creative economy. Hollywood HEART strives to ensure that the opportunities that lie ahead are open to all. From filmmaking to culinary arts, fashion to photography, the arts lead to growth and opportunity for our young people and for LA.

Through our programming, Hollywood HEART provides a pathway that encourages students to graduate from high school and succeed in college/career training programs. By linking in-class and after-school Workshops, we encourage long term engagement in the arts that has been proven to increase academic achievement and graduation rates. Arts education is vital to the future of Los Angeles. As noted scholar, Shirley Brice Heath, observes “cultural strategies are vastly underutilized and misunderstood…What leaders fail to realize is that culture is a school-to-work strategy, a youth development strategy, and an economic enterprise strategy.” Nowhere is this more true than in Los Angeles, the heart of the creative economy, not just for the US but for the world.

Hollywood HEART works with schools to design in-class Educational Arts Workshops that integrate creative skills into core academic curriculum and provide after-school programs for students who want to continue working in their chosen art form. We bring in volunteers and guest speakers to work with the students and talk to them about creative career opportunities. Hollywood HEART is also forging partnerships with community and four-year colleges to build a high school to college pipeline for low-income students interested in creative careers. We are partnering with the entertainment industry to encourage diversity and incorporate new perspectives into their workforce.

With support from LA 2050, Hollywood HEART will be able fully implement its program at LA High School and expand to two new schools. We will be able to tailor our workshops to each school’s curriculum and provide performances and exhibitions to engage the entire community.

By ensuring that young people have sustained access to the arts, we are making LA the best place to learn.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

Hollywood HEART is committed to a strong evaluation process. Our extensive internal assessment strategy includes administering pre- and post-program surveys to measure student interest and skill acquisition in the arts as well as their self-assessment of school engagement and class participation. Classroom teachers will evaluate program implementation, the quality of instruction, and alignment to the Common Core as well as the impact on student engagement and performance. We encourage the school administrations to provide comparative data on school attendance and achievement.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Volunteers/staff (human capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)
  • Education/training
  • Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)
  • Community outreach
  • Network/relationship support
  • Quality improvement research