DC Collaborative believes that the arts and humanities can enrich students’ lives – enhancing the creativity, curiosity, and life-long enthusiasm for learning. Our programs in support of our member providers derive from a multilayered mission to: provide students equitable access to high-quality arts and humanities experiences both at local cultural organizations and in schools; provide professional development opportunities in the arts and humanities to teachers and teaching artists; provide assistance and resources for teachers and schools to integrate the arts into the curriculum; foster partnerships between cultural organizations and DC public and public charter schools; and promote public awareness of arts and humanities education in DC. By galvanizing the educational experience of DC students with the arts and humanities, our programs work to ensure more opportunities for the growth and success of all of DC’s children in and beyond the classroom.

Working with our partners and members, the DC Collaborative provides exemplary programming including:

Arts and Humanities for Every Student (AHFES) and Professional Development initiatives (PD). Through these programs, we are able to equitably provide education and resources to students and teachers, many from underserved schools, who would not otherwise have access.

AHFES, the DC Collaborative’s legacy field-trip experiential program, provides increased access for all DC public and public charter school students to attend arts and cultural events as an integral part of their education. Whether at cultural institutions or in school, these age- appropriate arts and humanities programs educate students. Through this program, DC public and charter schools are eligible for free tickets and transportation to local cultural events and free in-school performances and workshops. 20,000-30,000 students on average, and more than 500,000 since our inception, participate in field-trips to cultural institutions through AHFES each year.

Professional Development Initiatives provide high quality professional development for educators (teachers, teaching artists, and arts administrators) to successfully implement arts education in DC public and public charter schools.

The DC Collaborative includes 100 member non-profit organizations and practitioners. Together, our members serve thousands of students from the DC public and public charter schools to provide access to dance, literary arts, music, visual arts, media arts and other arts and humanities disciplines. The DC Collaborative is dedicated to connecting the arts and humanities community to those who serve our children in public education in Washington, DC. The Collaborative’s strategies focus on introducing students and teachers to our membership, enabling our individual organizations to have an opportunity to develop deeper, sequential programming to become a significant part of the community we serve.


The DC Collaborative envisions that DC public schools and public charter schools are widely recognized for the comprehensive education—integrating the arts and humanities with core subjects---that they provide to all students. In addition, the DC Collaborative strives for a community where:

- All pre-k to grade twelve public school students have access to a high-quality arts and humanities education with the DC Collaborative working with its partners and members plays a leading role in ensuring that the arts and humanities are part of their daily education.

- DC public school and public charter school students feel pride in and take ownership of the rich cultural resources in the DC area.

- The DC community has an expanded number of cultural consumers who attend its arts and humanities organizations as a result of developing, supporting and connecting with young diverse audiences.

- Students and their families understand that they are part of this community, and students know that they can play an active role in the creation and production of the city’s arts and humanities programs, now and in the future.

- The arts and humanities inspire and engage the community, leading to a more vibrant, prosperous and empowered city.