Art Classes Take Hit With Decreasing Budgets

By Cory Morris

Milford High students who express themselves in design class may be disappointed in next year’s design class curriculum.

The current budget of the MHS art department has decreased by more than half in the past two years, according to MHS art instructors Mrs. Karine Richards and Mrs. Nicole Carter. The shrinking budget has caused a nuisance, quite obvious to most MHS art students.

The outcome of the reduced budget means significantly less money for supplies and mediums of art for the students to use and explore. With less money, it means a significant change in curriculum will need to occur to compensate, according to the art instructors.

Actually, all departments, not just art, have experienced budget cuts for funding new school programs, according to Jennifer Tucker, MHS administrative secretary who manages the high school budget. Due to state and federal cuts, most MHS budgets have also been affected.

For clay working, the budget has pushed some students to buy their own materials, such as glazes and paints, to finish projects.

“The end result is often sub-par,” said Mrs. Carter.

In design class, the budget most clearly affected the students when not every student was able to do a project as the paper supply was depleted.  However, “part of an art challenge can be met by working within tight restrictions to creatively solve problems,” said Mrs. Carter.

Mrs. Richards feels that the budget affects the teachers more than the students. The department members have had to take a more creative approach to projects, so they can continue affording supplies. Meanwhile, some students think it seriously restricts their creativity.

“I need art more than anything else,” said MHS student Melanie Ryan.

Mrs. Richards does think that the budget is hurting the students.  “They will have no experience, opportunities or exposure with different media,” she said. “The quality will be lacking.”

To compensate for the budget, the art department is expecting to add more art history and less actual art production to daily lessons. Unfortunately for most students, they enjoy design class because of their freedom of media and their ability to create art, not study it. Mrs. Richards states,

“The class will become more of a lecture,” said Mrs. Richards stated.

According to Mrs. Tucker, the budget will hopefully be reinstated next year.

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