Academic Fine Arts Instruction

  • The State of Texas places the Fine Arts, defined in 19 Texas Administrative Code as “the study of dance, music, theatre, and the visual arts,” squarely in the center of the academic instruction that districts are expected to provide their students.  19 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 74.1a states that:

    REQUIRED CURRICULUM.  (a)  Each school district that offers kindergarten through grade 12 shall offer, as a required curriculum:

    (1)  a foundation curriculum that includes:

    (A)  English language arts;
    (B)  mathematics;
    (C)  science; and
    (D)  social studies, consisting of Texas, United States, and world history, government, economics, with emphasis on the free enterprise system and its benefits, and geography; and

    (2)  an enrichment curriculum that includes:

    (A)  to the extent possible, languages other than English;
    (B)  health, with emphasis on the importance of proper nutrition and exercise;
    (C)  physical education;
    (D)  fine arts;
    (E)  career and technology education;
    (F)  technology applications;
    (G)  religious literature, including the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) and New Testament, and its impact on history and literature; and
    (H)  personal financial literacy.

    The curriculum requirements spelled out in 19 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 74.1b state that a “school district must provide instruction in the essential knowledge and skills of the appropriate grade levels in the foundation and enrichment curriculum as specified” (the State of Texas has adopted essential knowledge and skills for all four fine arts disciplines) and that a “school district may add elements at its discretion but must not delete or omit instruction in the foundation and enrichment curriculum.”

    (emphasis added)

    See TEA's "Required Curriculum" resource.

    For more information on state code that pertains to academic fine arts instruction, see the State of Texas: Selected Educational Code Pertaining to Fine Arts document below.

Fine Arts Standards (State and Local)

  • The State of Texas has academic standards for the fine arts that are known as the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for the following fine arts disciplines:

    Dance (6-12 grades)

    Music (All grades)

    Theatre (All grades)

    Visual Arts (All grades)

    (The Fine Arts TEKS and additional information is available at the TEA website.)

    The Center for Educator Development in Fine Arts (CEDFA) has organized links to the

    Fine Arts TEKS Organized by Discipline and Level

    Fine Arts Resources

    Please note that the state currently only supports dance as an acceptable art discipline at the secondary level.  The Houston ISD Fine Arts Department believes that dance is a fine art at all levels and has developed Fine Arts Dance Standards for PK-5th grade.  Please see the document below for more information.