Nigel Lythgoe with NDEO executive director Susan McGreevy-Nichols (third from right) and NDEO staffPeanut butter and jelly. Barnum and Bailey. Rodgers and Hammerstein. And now, NDEO and Dizzy Feet.

As part of the National Dance Education Organization’s conference this year in Miami, Nigel Lythgoe announced a new partnership between his Dizzy Feet Foundation and NDEO to support dance education standards. Lythgoe, the co-creator of television dance powerhouse “So You Think You Can Dance,” co-founded Dizzy Feet in 2009 to increase access to dance education in the United States, mainly by exposing children in low-income areas to the artform via local organizations and dance study scholarships. It’s no surprise, then, that he was eager to partner with NDEO, a fellow nonprofit devoted to advancing dance education through advocacy, professional development, standards and support services. The two organizations will now combine their considerable powers and outreach to keep dance education on the up-and-up—in all genres of dance and in every institution where it is taught.

"We are honored to earn the respect of the Dizzy Feet Foundation, which recognizes NDEO for its work in advocating for quality dance education across the US," says Susan McGreevy-Nichols, executive director of NDEO. "The partnership with DFF will help NDEO reach a broader audience."

This year’s conference, which began on October 23 and will continue until the 27th, is focused on “The Art and Craft of Teaching.” Hundreds of dance teachers were present to hear Lythgoe’s announcement.

Photo courtesy of NDEO

Calling all dance teachers! The National Coalition for Core Arts Standards needs YOUR input.

In early 2014, NCCAS plans to release new voluntary arts education standards. These standards will serve as a guide for what students should know and be able to execute as part of their arts education in a particular discipline. From now until October 21, you have the chance to review the dance standards for high school students and offer your own suggestions and edits. Anyone can review the standards; you don’t necessarily need to be a high school dance teacher. During the last review, which took place in June and July of this year, more than 160 dance educators from across the country gave their opinions about Pre-K through 8th-grade standards. NCCAS is hoping to dramatically increase that number this time around—according to the organization’s Facebook page, over 10,000 people have visited the high school standards review site.

Main goals for the new set of standards include emphasizing big ideas and philosophical foundations, as well as establishing performance standards.

Think you’ve got a few things to say? Hunker down and click here to participate in the review process.

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