WMA's 'Bus on Us' provides art education for area students
WTVY.com. Alison Lorraine. August 02, 2017.

The Wiregrass Museum of Art is teaming up with Dothan City and Houston County schools to get kids interested in art education. Many schools don't have art programs like they used to but the “Bus on Us” initiative could make a difference.

"I don't know anything that is not art, to tell you the truth,” said Sonya Steele, the new art teacher at Beverlye Magnet School. “Every single thing has something to do with good design, which is art."

For the first time in roughly 15 years, the school has a full time art program starting this fall. Some schools in Dothan and Houston County go without art programs and the Wiregrass Museum of Art wants to help fill that gap.

"The goal is to get students to the museum. We are aware that one of the biggest obstacles for school's field trips is the cost of transportation,” said WMA communications manager Lara Kosolapoff-Wright.

WMA says, “the bus is on us.” The program provides reimbursement money for bus transportation for kindergarten through 12th grade. Each Dothan City School can be reimbursed for 6 bus trips and each Houston County school can make 5 trips for art museum visits.

With the return of full time art classes at Beverley Magnet, Principal Maria Johnson says “Bus on Us” is the icing on the cake.

"Art is beyond middle school and beyond high school. There is an opportunity for these kids to stay engaged even as an adult in our community,” said Johnson. “We're going to utilize those bus trips so they understand this is a lifelong love of learning and there is a place for it in the community."

Beverlye Magnet is bringing art to the classroom and in the community one school at a time.

"Seeing a piece of art in person is a lot different than looking at it on paper,” added Steele.

The program will cover the cost of a total of 150 bus visits to the museum and reach an estimated 7,500 students in its first year.

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