Cultural Experience Project

Cultural Experience Project Celebrates Its 15th Anniversary

Fifteen years have passed since the first group of students participated in the Cultural Experience Project (CEP). Fifteen years since the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs and its partner, Atlanta Public Schools (APS) committed themselves to the serve each student: One Grade. One Venue. Guaranteed.

Over the years, the program has enjoyed much success. We have served over 52,000 students and raised almost 6 million dollars from a host of funders—individuals as well as corporate and private organizations and foundations. And, the Metro-Area’s cultural venues have supported our efforts every step of the way—providing experiences rich with opportunities to learn and to have fun.

As we kick off the new year, and celebrate this important CEP milestone, we reflect on the impact the experiences have had on APS students, teachers and chaperones, alike. We are grateful for the generosity of donors and funders, and we appreciate the commitment cultural venue staff demonstrate through the thoughtful and mind-expanding curricula they create.

During this 15th-anniversary year, we will highlight moments from the program’s past. We also will keep an eye to the future—thinking carefully about how to strengthen and expand the work we started—ensuring that each APS student continues to have yearly cultural experiences during his or her tenure with Atlanta Public Schools.

The Cultural Experience Project was launched during the 2005-2006 school year to afford every Atlanta Public School (APS) student from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade the opportunity to experience the city’s premier art and cultural venues. The City of Atlanta’s vision is for every student in APS to have minimally one onsite cultural experience at a cultural venue each year that directly ties to Common Core Georgia Performance Standards and curriculum goals. Teacher and student educational materials further the students understanding of arts and culture and compliment the age and grade level-appropriate experiences.

The idea is, “one grade, one venue, guaranteed”. Art or cultural venues agreed to provide a cultural experience for each APS grade level. The City of Atlanta envisions the opportunity for every student to experience the wealth of Atlanta’s cultural venues at no cost to the student.

The purpose and learning outcomes of the initiative are:

  • Further students understanding of art and culture
  • Increase students exposure and knowledge of art and cultural institutions
  • Enrich student’s education beyond the walls of the classroom and reinforce Georgia Performance Standards for core curriculum subjects (language arts, math, science, and social studies), visual arts, literary arts, and music.