The Tommy Hilfiger Group, which is wholly owned by PVH Corp. [NYSE:PVH] , and P.S. ARTS celebrated the launch of a unique arts education curriculum with a school visit to Walgrove Elementary School by designer Tommy Hilfiger, P.S. ARTS’ Amy Shapiro and Kristen Paglia, Walgrove Elementary School Principal Olivia Adams and President of the Tommy Hilfiger Corporate Foundation Guy Vickers.
Tommy Hilfiger and President of the Tommy Hilfiger Corporate Foundation Guy Vickers meet Walgrove Elementary teacher Mr. Donzell Lewis (Photo: Business Wire)
Designed specifically for students with autism and special needs in mind, the Tommy Hilfiger-P.S. ARTS Education Program includes funding for year-round arts education curriculums at both Walgrove and Grand View Elementary Schools led by full-time Teaching Artists.
“Autism awareness and education is a cause that is very near and dear to my heart, and an issue that affects my family.” said Tommy Hilfiger. “I am very proud to launch this partnership with P.S. ARTS, and I hope that with its unique focus on bringing all children together for arts education, the program will pave the way for similar programs in the Los Angeles area and across the country.”
Recent education budget cuts have resulted in the systematic reduction and elimination of arts programs in California public schools and across the country, with the greatest impact being felt in programs for special needs students. The reduction of integrated arts programs has led to a severe lack of opportunity for all students to learn and experience together in diverse classroom environments. This lack of inclusive curriculum opportunities has had the unintended effect of further segregating autistic and special needs students from the general student population. The partnership specifically addresses the need for programs in underserved public schools that are designed to be inclusive of both special needs and general education students.