Posted in GAP News

Are you a poet?

Nominations now being accepted for

Mississippi’s Poet Laureate

Date:              September 27, 2011

From:              Susan Dobbs, Public Relations Director

Mississippi Arts Commission

601/359-6031 or sdobbs@arts.state.ms.us

Jackson, Miss – Four Mississippi cultural agencies have been authorized by Governor Haley Barbour and the State of Mississippi to be the selection panel for individuals to be considered as the next Poet Laureate of Mississippi.  The Mississippi Arts Commission, the Mississippi Library Commission, the Mississippi Department of Archives and History and the Mississippi Humanities Council, in partnership with committee members representing the University Press of Mississippi, Jackson State University and others, are seeking nominations now, and will provide the Governor with a list of qualified nominees so that he can make an appointment to the position.

The Poet Laureate will serve as the official state poet, creating and reading appropriate poetry upon state occasions and state agency activities, and will represent the rich cultural heritage of Mississippi.  To find out all of the details on the nomination criteria and for the official nomination form, visit www.arts.state.ms.us or contact Diane Williams, Chair-Poet Laureate Panel at dwilliams@arts.state.ms.us or 601/359-6529.  The deadline for nomination submissions is October 28, 2011.

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The mission of the Greenville Arts Council is to promote the rich cultural heritage of the region and stimulate and encourage cultural activities, arts appreciation, arts education, and the creative works of artists. Some of the responsibilities that help define the Greenville Arts Council as the primary promoter of the arts in our area include offering art classes to children and adults, organizing community events, presenting an ongoing series of free exhibits featuring visual artists from the area and the state, and coordinating educational programs which teach arts-integration in local schools. The Greenville Arts Partnership between the Greenville Arts Council, the Greenville Public School District and our three community arts partners, Delta Center Stage, Delta Symphony Association and the Delta Children’s Museum, is focused on full arts integration in the GPSD elementary schools. Plentiful research documents the value of the teaching in and through the arts to help students understand core academic concepts on a deep level. The partnership was the first in the state of Mississippi accepted into the Kennedy Center Partners in Education Program in 2003, joining over 100 other partnerships between school districts and arts organizations across the country. The partnership provides professional development for teachers, arts experiences for students and resource and referral on arts integration issues. Professional development has been provided in two ways, through workshops with Teaching Artists from the Kennedy Touring Roster and grade-level and/or discipline-specific professional development with our local staff. We present a series of model demonstration lessons to teachers in grades K to 6, demonstrating connections between Partnership free arts programming and required state frameworks. The partner arts groups present a series of live performances allowing each elementary child in the GPSD to attend at least once each year. The groups work with the Arts Council staff to develop accompanying curriculum-based educational material for distribution to teachers prior to each performance. Over the years, we have succeeded in providing basic arts integration training district-wide as well as in-depth professional development to allow groups of teachers to increase their level of mastery.