From Our Editors
In 1978, California passed Proposition 13, which reduced property taxes, therefore decreasing state funding for education and eliminating the arts from many public elementary schools. Leap began in 1979 in response to this measure to ensure students could still participate in the arts. The organization uses residency programs in which professional teaching artists work in elementary and middle schools to enhance existing curricula with several weeks of expert guidance in painting, sculpting, dance, architecture, music, and theater. From serving 180 students in one school in its first year, Leap has grown to work with 8,000 students in more than 40 schools in the Bay Area, helping them to develop creativity and problem-solving skills and increase their self-esteem.