New ED&I Director-Elect & President-Elect

The MAEA Board of Directors is pleased to welcome two new board members. Please join the MAEA Board of Directors in welcoming Emily Moran as our first ever ED&I Director-Elect and Maureen Creegan-Quinquis to the role of President-Elect.
Emily will be leading our ED&I Committee in the important work of ensuring that our organization honors and includes people from all communities, especially those who have been historically excluded. If you are interested in getting involved in our ED&I Committee, please email Emily at
Maureen is stepping into a short term as President-Elect and will be taking over as President come January, 2021. If you are interested in connecting with Maureen, please contact her at
We are so excited to welcome these two new board members and look forward to continuing this important work.

ESSER Funding & Advocating for your Art Program

Earlier this summer, MAEAs Advocacy Liaison, Alice Gentili attended an important advocacy webinar organized by NAEA. This Town Hall webinar focused on the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Funding (ESSER) and Visual Arts, Design, and Media Arts Education.
If you haven’t already, the MAEA Board suggests you first start by reading Alice’s article in the most recent edition of the MAEA News (Vol. 7–No. 1 Summer Edition 2021). Her article can be found on page 26. There you will find more information about harnessing ESSER funding, as well as additional links to resources. Then we suggest you check out the slide deck from the NAEA Town Hall and the webinar, if you have time.
Additionally, if you have any questions or ideas for how MAEA can support your advocacy efforts, please reach out to Alice at

Summer 2021 MAEA News Out Now

In this issue you’ll find the President’s Message from Melissa Mastrolia, as well as articles and updates from Editor Jane McKeag, Helen Downey, Heidi Hurley, Alice Matthews Gentili, Lydia Gruner, Patty Klibansky, John Nordell, and Laura Evonne Steinman.
Thank you to everyone who submitted articles and updates for this edition of the publication!
Learn more about submitting on our website or email Jane McKeag at if you have any questions or would like her to walk you through the process.

August Art Education Zoom Series

We are happy to share we will be offering an August session for practitioners and educators in higher education, supervision, and pre & in-service educators who are involved in the Visual Arts teacher preparation on August 19 from 6:30 – 7:30 pm. This session will be facilitated by Jane McNeil-McKeag and Sohee Koo. The group will share critical reflection and strategies for online and in-person supervision and assessments in Visual Arts. The topic for this session is Art Teacher Assessments in MA: Reflections on CAP & Other Teacher Preparation Frameworks. Learn more and register.

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Task Force Update

The Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Task Force is happy to share that we have completed the work of drafting our ED&I Task Force recommendations. These recommendations were approved by the MAEA Board of Directors at the July board meeting.

The ED&I Task Force based these recommendations on the recommendations shared by NAEA and revised to fit the needs of MAEA. We would like to note that the ED&I Task Force considers this list of recommendations a living document that will evolve as the ED&I Committee works to execute on these recommendations, under the leadership of our new ED&I Director-Elect, Emily Moran.

Center for Instructional Support 2021 – 2022 Program Catalog

MAEA is happy to share two arts specific offerings from the Center for Instructional Support. More information about the Arts Leaders Network which runs meets 10/20, 11/10, 12/8, 1/19, 3/16, and 5/4 can be found on our PD Opportunities page.  There you will also find information about the webinar offering: Working with the Guidebook of Culturally Diverse Artists & Artworks which is being offered twice – once on August 18 and October 18 at 4:00 pm.

For more information and to register for both of these offerings, please visit the PD Opportunities page. If you have questions about these offerings, please contact Dawn Benski,

While you are at it, sign up for DESE’s Office of Literacy and Humanities newsletter.

Now Accepting Conference Session Proposals

Rebirth. Renew. Reinvigorate – MAEA 2021 Virtual Conference

We are excited to share the theme for the MAEA 2021 Virtual Conference is Rebirth.Renew.Reinvigorate. This year’s conference has been planned to be a virtual format due to the difficulties associated with planning in-person events during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The virtual conference will go live November 13, 2021. 

Most sessions will be pre-recorded and available for attendees to view at the day and time that works for them. We do plan to offer some synchronous sessions on Zoom and are considering ways to offer hands on studio workshop sessions to attendees! If you are open to presenting your session synchronously via Zoom, please note that in your session proposal! Live synchronous sessions will likely happen Saturday, November 13 and Sunday November 14, though planning is still underway.

We are excited to share that presenters of accepted proposals receive a 100% discount on conference registration. It is a great opportunity to share what you are passionate about with your local art education community AND learn from your state colleagues at the same time! Bonus, this year you don’t have to worry about travel arrangements!

The deadline for submitting session proposals is August 8, 2021

In Memoriam: Dr. Ruth Starratt

“What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.”   

                                              – Albert Pike [19th century American author]

As we move through this journey of life we encounter many different people and in so doing recognize that each and every life is unique. The time that the living essence of a being graces this world, and often for those of us who are fortunate to have had contact with the living essence of the person we are often forever changed and our lives thereby enriched by this experience.  

Art Education has lost a beloved colleague and longtime teacher, scholar, and artist and we are profoundly saddened at the death of Dr. Ruth Starratt, who passed away suddenly on March 12, 2021. 

Prior to her retirement Dr. Ruth, as those of us who knew her often called her, taught at Boston University, and was especially influential in the lives of her students. While many will remember Dr. Ruth for her artistic spirit and talent and for how she enriched the lives of all she touched with not only her artistic flare but also her intellectual curiosity, she, undoubtedly, will be best remembered as the engaging and wonderfully supportive art educator that she was. Dr. Ruth has without question left an indelible mark on the students that she taught and supervised as well as all of those who had the great, good fortune to have known her.

Dr. Ruth was a self-starter and had an infectious passion for learning, which she in turn imparted to her students. Learning was for her an essential part of life, and she encouraged her students, friends, and family members to pursue advanced degrees. Her characteristic drive is apparent in the fact that she received her Ed.M in Art and Education in 1981 from Columbia University, and one year later in 1982 had attained her Ed.D in Art and Education from the same institution with concentrations in the Art of Oceania and Art Education. Additionally, she held an MFA from Southern Connecticut State College with a concentration in painting, drawing, and printmaking, and her undergraduate degree was from the University of Bridgeport in Art and English Literature.

Dr. Ruth worked as an art teacher for nearly thirty years before becoming a full-time Lecturer at Boston University in 1998 until her retirement in 2017. Her professional affiliations were many including a membership in the Massachusetts Art Education Association for many years as well as memberships in the American Educational Research Association, Delta Kappa Gamma (Honorary Society for Women Educators), and a lifetime membership in the American Society of Botanical Artists. However, her longest professional affiliation, one of over fifty years, was with the National Art Education Association, in which she was extremely active, especially in the Women’s Caucus and held a lifetime membership in it. She served as an NAEA Elected National Assembly Delegate from 2000 to the present. She and her husband Jerry (Dr. J. Starratt, who previously served as a professor of Educational Administration at Boston College, and whose death sadly followed hers by a month) were permanent fixtures at the annual NAEA Conventions for years, and for those of us who had the good fortune to socialize and meet with them over food or a beverage were always in for stimulating, informative, and enlightening conversation that might go on for hours on end. Sharing the rarified air with these two incredible human beings was not only an uplifting experience but also a transformative one.  

Dr. Ruth’s artistic and academic undertakings were manifold such as the research monograph on the papier-mache teaching models of Louis Auzoux that she was commissioned to write by Wellesley College a number of years ago.  Her trip to Zambia and Botswana to continue her research in pre-history art and the petroglyphs produced by the early peoples of these countries. This work was part of ongoing research that she had begun many years ago at Columbia University. She delivered papers and seminars in Europe in numerous countries by invitation as part of her on-going work with national and international educators over the past thirty-five years. Her exquisite and delicate botanical paintings have graced many botanical exhibitions over the years, and are in the collections of close friends and family as well.

The sorrow that many of us feel for the loss of this dynamic force of nature is lessened only slightly with the comforting thought that we had the privilege to have known her, and experience her vitality and “joie de vivre”, which will live on in the many lives that she touched.

If you would like to create a paper crane in Ruth’s honor you can send one to Stacey Piwinski is collecting them. Please fold a paper crane and attach a fond memory or story. Mail them to Cranes for Ruth, P.O. Box # 560036, Medford, MA 02165.

If you have additional images you would like to share of Dr. Ruth Starratt, please send them to

Call for Award Nominations – Deadline Extended to June 6

Here is your chance to celebrate your outstanding colleagues and nominate them for the 2022 MAEA Art Educator Awards. MAEA will honor the award recipients in conjunction with the 2021 MAEA Conference – exact event details to be determined. The submission deadline has been extended to June 6, 2021.

Don’t forget you can also toot your own horn and ask your administration to nominate you for an award or self nominate!

There are over 15 different MAEA Awards – Click here for more information and to submit a nomination.