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School board and ACA will work to raise money to keep PACE program in schools

Photo by KADN staff

Program in jeopardy after federal and state government cut Title 1 funding

Monday, August 12, 2013 - 10:32am

After a misunderstanding about funding, the Lafayette Parish school board and Acadiana Center of the Arts have come to a more collaborative spirit in trying to keep the PACE program alive in the school system. 

The PACE program is a learning-focused arts program designed to spark creativity among elementary students. The program was in jeopardy of being cut after federal and state funding was cut from the Title 1 budget the board receives each year.

"Arts in general is important," Dr. Pat Cooper, superintendent of Lafayette Parish School System, said. "I think one of the things that we see every day is the effort through federal and state regulations to basically cut out the arts, not directly necessarily, but by saying we really want you to do the reading, writing and arithmetic. 

"What people sometimes don't understand is that reading, writing and arithmetic can be accomplished so much better if you have a strong arts program," he added.

The agreement between the two is after the budget is approved by the school board on August 21, both the school board and ACA will raise money to come up with the $100,000 or more to keep the important program in place. 

PACE will hopefully be back in schools after the funds are raised in late August.

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