Professional Artists in the Schools Program

The Arts Council integrates the arts into the curriculum of elementary, middle and high schools by placing professional visual and performing artists in classrooms and community sites throughout Monterey County.  The length of a program can be 2 hours to 200 hours based on a school’s schedule, needs and budget. The Arts Council primarily serves the areas in our county of greatest need, helping to secure funding to keep the cost to schools low.

Where We Work

  • Big Sur
    Artist Jayson Fann with YAC students
  • Castroville
  • Gonzales
  • Greenfield
  • King City
  • Marina
  • Monterey
  • Pajaro
  • Salinas
  • San Lucas
  • Seaside
  • Soledad   

What We Teach

Dance – Yoga, Ballet, Creative Movement, Hip-hop, Folklorico, Acro-Yoga, Modern, Capoeira, Swing, African, Salsa, Country-Western, Ballroom, Fusion

Visual Arts – Animation, Collage, Ceramics, Murals, Found Art, Woodworking, Basketry, Watercolor, Drawing, Photography, Acrylic, Silk, Quilting, Bookmaking

Music – Singing, Percussion, Guitar, Music Theory, Recording, Cultural and Historical Explorations, Songwriting, Performances

Drama – Fables, Spoken-Word Poetry, Skit Writing, Improv, Stand-Up Comedy, Play Creation, Historical Drama, Short Films, Storytelling

Our Teachers

Professional artists conduct workshops with the students in a specific art discipline which is chosen by principals and/or teachers. Children explore their own creativity while developing their problem solving skills and imagination, resulting in an awareness of their own creative abilities. There are over 65 talented artists and performers to choose from ranging from visual, literary, and performing artists.

» Click here for a listing of currently active professional artists in the schools

To Get Started

Please contact Karyn Lee-Garcia to find the right teaching artists for your school:

Karyn Lee-Garcia, Arts Education Coordinator
831.622.9060 ext.102

Become a Professional Artist in the Schools

If you would like to become a Professional Artist in our Schools, please send email along with your current resume or curriculum vitae to  Karyn Lee-Garcia at
Please note your discipline and grade level preferences in your message.

Support this Program

Our board of directors works to secure funding to support arts education as part of the core curriculum in accordance with California state standards, especially in those schools that lack opportunities in the arts. Despite a requirement in the state’s education code requiring access to four different art forms each year from 1st to 12th grade – most of our Monterey County schools do not meet this standard.

The Arts Council has been providing art education in schools all over Monterey County since 1988. With each study that points to the connection between the arts and success in school and life, we find ourselves more dedicated to ensure the availability of the arts for every student. In the 2013-14 school year, 4,129 students were served a total of 1,335 hours of Arts Education through the PAS program.

The PAS program is funded by organizations and individuals who understand the importance of arts education for the future of the children of Monterey County. Students with exposure to and participation in the arts are more likely to stay in school, have better success while in school, have higher SAT scores and graduate college at a higher rate. They are more likely to volunteer, to be informed citizens, and vote as young adults. With your help we can do more.

To make a contribution to this program, please contact Paulette Lynch, Executive Director at 831-622-9060.

Past Projects

In partnership with CHISPA Housing, in 2013/14 the Arts Council PAS teachers and students from Salinas, Gonzales and Castroville explored the story of Lucia Zentano through music, dance, drama and the visual arts.

In Gonzales, our afterschool G.A.T.E. classes from La Gloria Elementary and Fairview Middle School in 2014 put on an original play about ocean conservation, created human sized crab, shark and whale costumes, applied some music theory to songwriting and drumming, and created beautiful ocean themed artwork. We then visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

The crab speaks up about ocean pollution.
The crab speaks up about ocean pollution.
Music students sing about keeping the ocean clean.
Music students sing about keeping the ocean clean.







Fairview Middle School students drum for their families.
Fairview Middle School students drum for their families.








Monterey Bay Aquarium trip with Fairview Middle School and La Gloria Elementary GATE students
Visiting ocean life at Monterey Bay Aquarium.











In Pajaro, the combined talents of professional artists, CSUMB students, K-8th grade students resulted in an amazing mural
In Pajaro, the combined talents of professional artists, CSUMB students and Kindergarten through 8th grade students resulted in an amazing mural.










Community High
Salinas Community High students develop an eye for portraiture.









And More

  • Salinas Community High students learned about the fine art of photography from professional photographer Patrice Ward.
  • At Laurel Wood Elementary School in Salinas, Paperwing Theater owner and professional director/producer Koly McBride taught Drama for Literacy to a class of young English leaners.
  • The local Migrant Education program had an art class focused on Cesar Chavez and Community Service for grades Kindergarten through 8th.
  • At El Sausal Middle School, Jose Ortiz taught an art class for the AmeriCorps College Track Program aiming at inciting passion for better school attendance.
  • Yoga and Creative Movement was explored by the young residents of CHISPA low income housing units in East Salinas.

 In the 2013-14 school year, 4,129 students were served a total of 1,335 hours of Arts Education through the PAS program!


CA Poetry Out Loud 2014 – Haley Walker

CA Poetry Out Loud 2014 - Haley Walker




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    Support the arts in your community by donating to the Arts Council for Monterey County today. All donations are fully tax-deductible.

    Or send your check payable to: Arts Council for Monterey County, PO Box 7495, Carmel, CA 93921
  • Contact Us


    Sunset Center Room 5
    San Carlos at 8th St.
    Carmel, CA 93923

    MAIL: PO Box 7495, Carmel, CA 93921