Southwest Independent School District is excited to announce the launch of the Kriewald Road School of the Arts, a premier school with an emphasis on the integration of the arts. The new school design will incorporate staff collaborations with fine arts organizations to support arts-based projects and strengthen arts-integrated practices into every aspect of a child’s learning experience. Students will have the opportunity to experience diverse works of art, through hands-on activities in a collaborative and creative environment. “We’re excited to offer our families and students another choice for innovative learning,” said Dr. Lloyd Verstuft, SWISD Superintendent of Schools. “This is a big win for our community and we look forward to seeing students thrive through the integration and exploration of the fine arts."
Principal Rosie Hidalgo dedicated a year of preparation through a partnership with Trinity University through its Trinity School Design Network (TSDN). The program supports the design and development of innovative schooling opportunities for students across the greater San Antonio area. “I have a background in music and many of our teachers do as well so it made sense to hone in on that strong foundation and really expand upon it,'' said Kriewald Road Principal Rosie Hidalgo. “Not only do the arts enhance the process of learning, but they also provide opportunities for creativity, diligence, expression, patience, and teamwork.
Kriewald Road School of the Arts will use the Oklahoma A+ Schools Institute framework to transform the campus. The network provides the framework for developing a creative culture that supports a school's unique needs. Over time, components of the framework will transform a school's practice, priorities, and identity to build an environment where teachers and students are excited to learn together.
Last fall, a team of district administrators visited the Jones Academy of Fine Arts in Arlington which also adopted the A+ Schools framework. “It was enlightening to see the impact of this way of teaching. The school uses every space to inspire creativity and incorporates a cross-curricular approach to learning,” said Richard Flores, SWISD’s Director of Fine Arts. “Similarly, we want to take our students to that next level. Research shows embedding Fine Arts into the curriculum will help with increasing student achievement, parental involvement, attendance, and reducing disciplinary referrals.”
Teachers are attending A+ training over the summer and will incorporate fine arts into lesson plans when Kriewald Road School of the Arts opens its doors this August. The school will also offer a strings program for students interested in learning to play violin or guitar. Over the next three years, new courses, partnerships, and programming will be added to the school’s curriculum. “We are creating an extraordinary place for students to learn and for staff to excel,” said Ms. Hidalgo.