Young Imaginations (YI) has a 29 year history of working without interruption to bring children’s classes, professional development for arts educators and classroom teachers, and model programs into schools in northern California.
We believe the arts are essential to the education of all children, and our programs bring the arts into the mainstream of discussions central to school improvement. The arts have helped us to become creative adults and Young Imaginations remains dedicated to the mission of placing the arts at the core of the educational process.
YI serves a diversified student population representative of racial/ethnic groups in northern California, particularly in the San Francisco Bay Area counties of Marin, Sonoma, San Francisco and the East Bay, as well as in Siskiyou County. Our geographic distribution of school sites represents a blend of inner-city, urban/suburban and rural/remote communities.
To support pre-school, elementary and middle school education, we have maintained a teaching team of approximately 20 artists who have performing careers as well as roles as arts educators. They represent a range of world cultural traditions and design lessons that actively involve students in the making of music and dance.
In 2003 The San Francisco School District selected Young Imaginations as the “Outstanding Community Arts Organization” in recognition of a long history of work in its public schools. Marianne Locke, co-founder of YI and previous Executive Director, served on the state board of the California Music Educators Association for 10 years and received its Multicultural Music Educator Award in 2004 for excellence in multicultural music education. Included in our agency’s history, YI arts educators have presented sessions at conferences, including the California Alliance for Arts Education (CAAE), California Music Educators Association, San Francisco’s Arts Providers Alliance, and San Francisco’s Arts Education Funders Collaborative.
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