At inception, CSSSA and the CSSSA Foundation were created to provide advanced arts education to a youth population that reflects the socioeconomic and racial diversity of California.
In keeping with these values, we stand resolutely behind the Black Lives Matter movement that demands an end to violence against the Black community, a dismantling of the anti-Black policies that have systematically devalued Black lives and the creation of a world in which Black people have the power to thrive. To all who are active in this movement—protesting, speaking out, taking action, and of course, making art—we thank you.
Furthermore, we want to express solidarity with the Black members of our community, from teachers, faculty, and staff, to students, alumni, and applicants. Your voices, experiences, and artistic expertise are a vital part of our program and our community.
We recognize that we are participants in a society that creates barriers to opportunity by specifically excluding young people of color. To divest from these systems, we are critically analyzing and revising our programs and leadership structures. We are also working to reject other forms of discrimination and adopt intersectionality as a core value.
CSSSA and the CSSSA Foundation are proud to have provided arts education to talented students no matter their race, gender, sexual orientation, or socioeconomic conditions for over 30 years. Now we must recommit to the values of racial and social justice and promise that our words will be met with action.
Thank you for being part of the CSSSA community as we evolve and move closer to the anti-racist arts organizations we want to be. Most of all, thank you for sharing our belief that high-quality education—including arts education—should be accessible to all.
Donna Miller Casey
Chair, CSSSA Foundation Board of Directors
Chair, CSSSA Board of Trustees