Arts Enrichment Project in Schools

The Arts Enrichment project in Schools began in 1991 at the initiative of Doron Foundation and under its budgetary management, and under the professional management of the Department of Education of the University of Haifa. Doron Foundation for Education & Welfare, the Ministry of Education and Haifa Municipality, funded the project. The program was active for eight school years; the first three of which under the supervision of Haifa University, in two schools; and for five years from 1994, in six schools, during which time HAF managed the project.

The aim of the project was to enrich the visual arts and music lessons, applying different teaching methods that were not customary in the regular education system. The number of frontal lessons in the schools was reduced, while there was an increase in the scope of special activities such as visits to theater, concerts and museums, that helped expose the students to high art.

By this method, two teachers were integrated into an art class; in the music classes, the work was done in small groups, including multi-age activities, in addition to major decoration projects in schools. Special days of activity were dedicated to joint activities with parents and family members.

Art rooms were established in the schools that took part in the project, musical instruments and didactic equipment were purchased. The University, with the help of professional guides, established work patterns and educational principles that formed the basis for the continuation of the project in the following years, with HAF joining in to manage the project.

Haifa Arts Foundation took the management of the project upon itself in the 1995-4 school year, and Doron Foundation decided to transfer its allocations directly to the artistic bodies, while increasing the allowance.

The implementation of the project in 1991 began in two state schools:

  • Nirim in Nave David
  • Ma'ale HaCarmel in Hadar

Four additional schools, chosen according to the percentage of new immigrants or pupils from disadvantaged populations studying in them, were added when Haifa Arts Foundation managed the project.

The four additional schools were:

  • Gordon State School
  • Leo Baeck State School
  • The Aharon HaRoeh State Religious School in Kiryat Shmuel
  • El Hiwar School 

In the latter two, art classes were an innovation in the school's curriculum. About 1,200 students participated in the project in all six schools.

With the Foundation managing the project, important changes took place in the professional field; the knowledge and professionalism of teachers and school managements enhanced. Changes in the instruction of music studies were made, professional portfolios were created and included in the work plan, and theater studies were added to the curriculum.

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Some of the students who completed their studies and were involved in the project were absorbed in appropriate follow-up frameworks—such as the Reut School of Arts—and others carry the special knowledge of those who have experienced and delved into the world of the arts. For five years, this project was the largest in terms of budgetary activity, and one of the most important projects in which HAF took part. Haifa Municipality, the Ministry of Education and Culture, and the private Doron and Glencore foundations shared financing.

At the end of the 1999 academic year, the Arts Enrichment Project ended.