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  Washington's Innovative Schools

Tacoma School of the Arts, Tacoma School District

Jon Ketler, Principal
http://tacomaschools.org/Schools/innovative/Pages/Innovative-School-School-of-the-Arts-%28SOTA%29.aspx

Grade level: 10–12
Free and Reduced Meals: 16.7%
Year school began to implement innovative practices: 2001


The mission of the Tacoma School of the Arts (SOTA) is to sustain an urban center offering a creative path of learning, which emphasizes human expression through the visual and performing arts as central elements in academic achievement and lifelong endeavors. SOTA aims to:

  • Stimulate higher-level thinking and problem solving skills
  • Provide advanced training in the arts
  • Prepare students to meet the challenges of the 21st century
  • Include experiential and innovative approaches to learning
  • Use both public and private facilities
  • Connect students to the larger community
  • Build this creative learning community in Tacoma’s urban core

SOTA is an all-day high school program that includes a full selection of visual and performing arts as part of the academic day. The curriculum is college preparatory and project-based, and students typically take eight classes. Students enter as sophomores and choose one of nine art majors (dance, theatre, vocal music, traditional music, alternative music, audio recording and songwriting, painting and drawing, graphics, photography, and video) around which academic studies focus. In addition to the eight full-time arts teaching staff, the school contracts with adjunct artists, who teach an additional five sections of art. Additional offerings include Hip-Hop, Jazz, and Advanced Graphic Design.

Old Capitol Building, PO Box 47200, 600 Washington St. S.E., Olympia, WA  98504-7200  (360) 725-6000  TTY (360) 664-3631
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