Arts + Policy

Arts + Policy


Arts programming in Boston schools linked to attendance, engagement gains 

Arts programming in Boston schools linked to attendance, engagement gains 

Study finding follows decade-long effort to boost arts in district

A NEW STUDY says an effort to increase arts programming in the Boston Public Schools has helped boost student attendance and promote student and parent engagement with schools, outcomes that arts supporters say provide added rationale for maintaining or enhancing the role of arts in the schools.  For students receiving arts programming, the study found(...)

Read More »

Stark differences make many Mass. communities neighbors in name only 

Stark differences make many Mass. communities neighbors in name only 

Municipal boundaries often separate cities and towns with wide demographic differences 

IN 1847, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts ordered that a line be drawn from the mouth of the Shawsheen River, down along its eastern bank, and “thence in a straight line westerly, to a marked stone in the wall … by Jacob Barnard’s house.” This formed the first two legs of the boundary of the new(...)

Read More »

Maverick Square, which honors state’s first slave owner, should be renamed 

Maverick Square, which honors state’s first slave owner, should be renamed 

Diverse Boston crossroads should not carry the stain of ignominious history 

SHE CAME TO the window around 9 a.m., singing in a loud, high-pitched voice. Her words were foreign, but they communicated a sense of sorrow so powerful that John Josselyn was left shaken.  “Going out to her,” Josselyn later recounted in his journal, he was met with “a great deal of respect” from a striking(...)

Read More »

Tax breaks not on House budget chief’s radar

Tax breaks not on House budget chief’s radar

Michlewitz served on tax expenditure commission

THE HOUSE’S TOP budget official said his spending plan for fiscal 2022 doesn’t address outdated or ineffective tax breaks highlighted in a recent commission report and he doesn’t plan to push for separate legislation to deal with them. Rep. Aaron Michlewitz of Boston, the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, served on the(...)

Read More »

Public art can help drive our post-pandemic renewal

Public art can help drive our post-pandemic renewal

Shared cultural displays are 'expressive and democratic' at their core

A YEAR INTO the global pandemic and the once-familiar roar of people, cars, and activity in Boston is still a memory. The feeling of life in suspension persists. Yet, glimmers of hope sparkle as vaccines roll out, days lengthen, and workers return. Now is the time to imagine how we safely and equitably reopen Boston(...)

Read More »

Film tax credit backers say they have the votes

Film tax credit backers say they have the votes

Dispute findings of tax expenditure commission

SUPPORTERS OF THE state’s film tax credit, which came under fire this week from a commission examining Massachusetts tax breaks, say they have the votes to pass legislation that would make the tax credit permanent. The credit, which under current law is scheduled to sunset on January 1, 2023, provides a tax credit equal to(...)

Read More »

13 views on how the pandemic will shape the future

13 views on how the pandemic will shape the future

One year after COVID hit, taking stock of the ‘new normal’  

IT WAS A YEAR AGO this week that it became clear how completely our world would be turned upside down. After mounting global concern about a deadly new respiratory illness originating in China, the novel coronavirus, as we initially referred to it, established a firm foothold in the US and the country was soon in(...)

Read More »

Meet Michael Bobbitt, state’s new arts leader

Meet Michael Bobbitt, state’s new arts leader

‘Arts and culture is inherently a social justice medium’

THE LIFE STORY of Michael Bobbitt is probably very similar to what he would like to replicate for residents statewide as he takes over as the executive director of the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Bobbitt, as a young boy growing up in Maryland just outside Washington, DC, was exposed to the arts, took a strong interest,(...)

Read More »

There are many Amanda Gormans out there

There are many Amanda Gormans out there

Unique and powerful voices are all around us

RIGHT NOW, poetry has our attention. On January 20, Amanda Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet in US history, performed her breathtaking poem The Hill We Climb in front of 40 million viewers. The power and sublime beauty of her words, the grace of her poetic hand gestures, and the brilliance with which she captured this(...)

Read More »