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UNESCO Associated Schools Network

International Arts Education Week - 25 to 31 May 2020 ​

​​​​​​​​​Stefania-Giannini.JPGVide​o message to mark International Arts Education Week

By Ms Stefania Giannini, 
UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education


Video message 

Dear teachers, students and parents of the UNESCO Associated Schools Network, ASPnet community,

It's my great pleasure to address you on the occasion of the celebration of International Arts Education Week.

Art is the expression of our emotions and feelings, and arts education somehow unlocks the creativity that lies within each one of us.

There is no more powerful channel than art to create bonds across continents, countries, cultures and languages, and there is no more powerful channel which can tell the story of our common humanity.

This has happened throughout the experience of the global Covid-19 pandemic that has affected each one of you. It is unprecedented in history and we are ready learning some lessons.

I heard some of the inspiring and touching stories that you shared during the ASPnet webinar last week. This webinar was really one of the more successfully organised at UNESCO during this pandemic crisis. I want to congratulate and thank each one of you for your testimonies and your participation.

Many of you spoke about how arts and arts education had brought consolation, relief and strength to cope with isolation and the stress of this unprecedented situation.

The fact that you spoke about the fundamental role of art for your well-being is very telling.

This really sends a strong message to all the education community, all cultural actors and policymakers.

Through art education, we can transmit values that touch our heart and mind.

Indeed, the arts can contribute to fostering appreciation for our cultural diversity, for our shared planet, for our cultural and living heritage. To sum up, for our same mission in this planet as a common humanity.

In this way, it also enriches us as active global citizens – and promotes a humanistic vision of education that is very ground of UNESCO mandate since the beginning of our organisation.

Arts education is a powerful channel to promote international understanding, and peace. This starts in our daily life, through respect and caring for others and the world around us. "Taking care" is one of the key words that we must put at the very core of our common agenda for this centre especially now within this crisis and after the crisis.

We must do much more for education and culture to meet in the classroom. This is something that UNESCO is really doing, especially in the coming weeks and times.

This is the aim of a new UNESCO Initiative entitled "Education and Culture together in action to advance the SDGs."

I am sure that ASPnet can play a leading role by showing how arts education concretely can enrich learning and create awareness across cultures about issues shaping our lives and our future.  

So let me wish you a very creative and happy International Arts Education Week!

Thank you very much for your attention!​