The 2019 State of Art Education

2019 State of Art Education Survey

Last year, we conducted the largest survey of K-12 art teachers in the United States. Our goal was to share a comprehensive look at what it meant to teach art in the 21st Century.

This year, we did it again! In January 2019, over 2000 art teachers from all 50 states shared about everything from supply budgets to educational initiatives.

Once again, we are excited to share the results. See the ten most interesting insights below. Then, download the comprehensive survey results here.2019 Survey Results

Download Full Report

10 Quick Takeaways from the Full Report

1. So much to do, so little time.


57% of art teachers have less than forty-five minutes of prep time each day.

2. Show me the money.

Annual Budget

Nationwide, the average art teacher sees 376 students per year and has a budget of $1861. However, averages can be misleading. We know many art teachers are making do with much less. Perhaps this is why 46% of art teachers need to fundraise to bring in extra money for their programs.

3. Fibers and tech and printmaking, oh my!

Fibers, Digital, Printmaking

On the whole, art teachers are most interested in learning more about digital arts, fiber arts, and printmaking. Does this describe you? Check out these courses and Learning Packs that can help!

Digital Arts

Fiber Arts


4. Sticking to it like glue.

average teacher experience

28% of middle and high school teachers and 25% of elementary teachers reported they have been teaching for over twenty years!

5. Great power and great responsibility…

hands holding art supplies

66% of elementary teachers, 74% of middle school teachers, and 70% of high school teachers report having total control over what they teach. This can be a blessing and a curse. If you’re looking for guidance, check out the resources below.

6. Art teachers raise the bar.

art teachers follow standards

75% of art teachers reported following their state standards, and 54% reported following national standards.

7. Working together.

art teachers

19% of elementary art teachers have another art colleague in their building. This number jumps to 59% at the high school level.

8. The name game.

hi, my name is tag

Elementary art teachers have the toughest job when it comes to remembering names. On average, they see approximately 460 kids each year! Middle school and high school average 360 and 220 respectively.

9. The highest highs and the lowest lows…

thumbs up thumbs down

74% of art teachers said watching students develop their creative abilities was their favorite part of the job. Coming in second? Building relationships and connecting with students.

On the flip side, teachers struggle most with behavior management and lack of respect for the art program.

It’s important to remember you aren’t alone. Here’s everything you need to know about classroom management in the art room.

10. Teaching art really is the best job in the world.

why art teaching is the best

Once again, we ended the survey by asking teachers to share their biggest joys. Here are some of our favorite answers!

Helping students learn that it’s okay to take risks and it’s okay to fail. That is how we learn. – Elementary Teacher from Minnesota

Knowing that unlocking creativity empowers a student with agency and self-confidence. – High School Teacher from California

Providing a therapeutic outlet for students with high stress and anxiety. – High School Teacher from Arizona

The fact that I teach so many students—300+—and all of them are bringing more creativity to our world. I get to plant seeds. – Middle School Teacher from Nevada

Helping children connect to their personal vision and feel empowered as they build their skills. – Elementary Teacher from New Jersey

This is just a fraction of what we uncovered. Download the full report below for the whole picture!


Download Full Report

Which survey result did you find the most surprising (or unsurprising)?

Do you share similar experiences in your day-to-day teaching experiences?

Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.


Amanda Heyn

Amanda Heyn is AOEU’s Director of K–12 PD & Media and a former AOEU Writer and elementary art educator. She enjoys creating relevant and engaging professional development just for art teachers.

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