Engaging with art is essential to the human experience. Almost as soon as motor skills are developed, children communicate through artistic expression. Among adults, arts participation is related to behaviors that contribute to the health of civil society, such as increased civic engagement and greater social tolerance. The authors of this article conducted a large-scale, randomized controlled trial study of Houston’s collective efforts to restore arts education through community partnerships and investments. They reviewed student-level demographics, attendance and disciplinary records, and test score achievement. They also collected original survey data from 42 Houston area schools on students’ school engagement and social and emotional-related outcomes. The findings showed that increasing the range of arts educational experiences available for K-12 students had positive impacts on their academic, social, and emotional outcomes.
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