The Vermont Millennium Arts Project (VT MAP) will connect students and teachers in Vermont schools to professional artists via the Internet. VT MAP will recruit and train artists to act as student mentors. The project will also, via the Internet, connect arts teachers across the state to one another and allow them to offer peer feedback to student artists. Finally, VT MAP will work with arts organizations statewide to provide students with access to gallery talks and online symposia, and make performances and exhibitions available to students whose access is limited by geography or disability.
Vermont is composed of many small towns. Often during the winter months the roads are too treacherous for travel, leaving these small, rural towns extremely isolated. The harsh winters, coupled with economic constraints, present difficult challenges for K-12 arts education.
VT MAP will focus on bringing the smaller and more isolated schools up to the state's standard for arts education by using the Internet and web technologies. VT MAP will focus on helping these schools up to standard by coordinating and consolidating disparate online, artist-mentoring activities to more equally serve schools, students, teachers and artists. Online mentoring for music composition, visual arts and writing will be the initial focus, and will expand to include dance and theater. Online showcases of students' works across the state will also be featured.
The Vermont Arts Council, in partnership with the Vermont Alliance for Arts Education and the WEB Project, will combine efforts and collaborate. VT MAP will also involve the Vermont Department of Education, the Center for Rural Studies, and the state's seven local arts agencies.