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Strengthening the Arts Education Ecosystem

  • Junior Center of Art and Science 558 Bellevue Ave (on the shores of Lake Merritt) Oakland, CA (map)

We’ve all daydreamed about a sustainable arts education ecosystem in the Bay Area and now is our time to make plans to create those dreams together!

Join teaching artists, program directors, and arts administrators who make up our landscape of arts education as we explore the question: What does a sustainable arts education ecosystem look like in the Bay Area? Facilitators Aimee Espiritu and Mika Lemoine will help us discover the answer and work toward that vision.

Plan to leave with a tighter Arts Ed network of resources and peers, a personal assessment of where you can best support this dream and what support you need, and a collectively created plan for a more sustainable field.

Light refreshments will be served, including drinks.

This meeting will continue conversations begun at a policy roundtable meeting on October 6, continued at "That Teaching Artists Life..." on October 25, and at "Becoming the Arts City we Say We Are" on December 7.

The program is a partnership between the Arts Education Alliance of the Bay Area, the Junior Center for Art and Science, Teaching Artist Guild, Emerging Arts Professionals San Francisco / Bay Area, and Intersection for the Arts; we seek to cultivate a field that is sustainable and collaborative by investing in relationships, individual empowerment, and skill building.

Our facilitators: 


Aimee M. Espiritu is excited to launch Espiritu Consulting this October 2017, focusing on Strategic Planning, Arts Administration and Education. As the recent Co-Director of Programs, she called Youth Speaks her professional home from 2014-17. It has been her calling to empower youth to recognize their authentic voice as it relates to societal transformation. She has been an educator for 14 years with a primary focus of engaging young people through creative youth development, curriculum design, exhibit development, and peer-to-peer training. A Seattle native, she earned a BFA in Industrial Design from the University of Washington and is a credentialed Secondary teacher with a Masters in Urban Education from Holy Names University. After completing her graduate degree, Aimee was the Youth Programs and Community Engagement Manager at San Francisco's Children's Creativity Museum for 4.5 years. As an educator and artist, Aimee’s passion for relevant arts education for youth is both professional and deeply personal. A queer Filipin@ visual and performance artist, she has been creating art installations, writing, performing, and directing theater for the past 16 years.


Mika Lemoine.jpg

Mika Lemoine is a Teaching Artist Mentor at Destiny Arts Center where she teaches hip hop and street dance to youth in the public schools and on site.  She is the Artistic Director of the Destiny Junior Company, a pre-professional performance company where youth ages 9-12 use their powerful voices through word and dance to make art about what matters to them. Originally from Oakland, CA and an alum of the program, Mika has been with Destiny as a teaching artist since 2010. In today’s climate of commercial “hip hop,” Mika emphasizes historical and social context when teaching foundational styles and includes her students in the Bay Area street dance community. She believes that creative expression is a catalyst for social change and vital to human survival. Mika has danced with Versastyle Dance Company and Contra Tiempo Urban Latin Dance Theater in Los Angeles, Mix’d Ingrdnt’s in Oakland, and most recently with Embodiment Project where her solo was described as possessing “profound beauty and emotion” by SF Chronicle. She is the co Artistic Director of See Through Soul, an Oakland grown dance company created in 2017 that draws inspiration from various dance styles to express self and seek truth. Mika holds a BA in Dance and Latin American Studies from UCLA’s department of World Arts and Cultures.