Artistic literacy is a combination of foundational knowledge and skills in an art form with the ability to work in four processes fundamental to the arts: Creating, Responding, Performing/Presenting, and Connecting. The Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in the Arts include five arts areas: dance, media arts, music, theater, and visual arts.

Distance Learning Resources

Please visit the Student Instruction COVID-19 Resources webpage to find resources for providing student instruction via distance learning. On this page, you can also subscribe to email alerts to stay up to date with Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) distance learning resources.

Standards, Assessment and Graduation Requirements

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for an update on recent development and next steps in the 2018 arts standards rulemaking process

Graduation requirements in the arts include standards and course requirements. View an overview of these requirements. Find additional information on the Graduation Requirements webpage.

The 2008 Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in the Arts were revised during the 2017-18 school year, and are currently going through the rulemaking process. View the draft 2018 Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in Arts Education.
New Resources and Updated Arts Standards Document Available
As of February 2020, the draft 2018 Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in the Arts are still proceeding through the rulemaking process. Some updates have been made to the official draft of the standards and were posted here in early February 2020. Those updates are:
  • No wording was changed.
  • A key and introductory language have been added.
  • Italicized terms are aligned with the arts standards glossary.
  • Bolding for foundations has been refined.
  • The computer science-related benchmarks have been accurately marked with **.
  • A few typos have been corrected.
  • Additional columns for tracking lesson/unit and assessment of each benchmark.
In addition, a Glossary for the 2018 Arts Standards and a Foundations Overview are now available. 

The date by which all schools must implement the new standards will be determined during the rulemaking process. Relevant rulemaking documents will be posted on the Minnesota Department of Education's Arts Rulemaking webpage. The next arts standards review will happen in 2027-28. For more information about the arts standards review process, contact Alina Campana at 651-582-8706.

Transition to 2018 Arts Standards

MDE and the Perpich Center for Arts Education are partnering to develop supports and materials to aid local education agencies and arts educators in the transition to the 2018 arts standards.

To assist educators and local educational agencies in the transition, a Recommended Transition Timeline is available. This timeline identifies phases between now and full implementation that could be followed during the district or school review process. Note: this timeline could change as a result of the formal rulemaking process. Though not yet set, it is estimated that the new standards will need to be fully implemented in all Minnesota school districts by the 2021-22 school year.

Special Projects

Turnaround Arts
Turnaround Arts, a program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, is based on the premise that high-quality learning in and through the arts can strengthen school reform efforts, boost academic achievement, and increase student engagement in schools facing some of the toughest educational challenges. Turnaround Arts: Minnesota began working with low-performing schools across Minnesota in 2014, and became an MDE program in 2018. Participating schools have demonstrated increased student achievement, increased student and family engagement, decreased suspensions and behavior increased teacher instructional capacity, and improved school culture and climate. Read more on Turnaround Arts in Minnesota.

Recognition and Awards Programs

The Minnesota Scholars of Distinction program nurtures and recognizes distinguished achievement by highly motivated, self-directed students. In the arts, Scholars of Distinction awards may be earned in Theater Arts. Learn more about this opportunity, in general, by visiting the Scholars of Distinction webpage, or for information specific to the Theater Arts award, visit the Perpich Center for the Arts website.

Standards and Related Information