What We Do

In our classrooms, through our specialized programs and our community art, we engage at-risk youth in educational arts to spark creative thinking and awaken the entrepreneurial spirit.

The Benefits of Arts Education

The arts are often the first subject to be removed from school due to a lack of resources, yet the importance of creativity in a child's life is significant...

Research proves that arts education enriches the lives of students, increasing their academic, social, mental and economic well-being over the long-term. Specifically, arts education contributes to six key outcomes, which are key indicators of life and academic success.


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 Academic Achievement 

  Students engaged in the arts are five times less likely than their peers to drop out of school and three times as likely to graduate from college, allowing them to pursue greater career opportunities. For at-risk students, arts education increases school attendance, student motivation and academic success across the curriculum, with art students outperforming their peers on standardized tests. 

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Critical Problem Solving

Students who study the arts re-evaluate their work as they go and develop advanced problem solving skills, adapting their artwork to new perspectives or materials. As a result, art students are more likely to approach problems with patience and innovative thinking.



Collaboration + Communication 

Arts education provides students with a wide variety of collaborative projects, ranging from painting murals to acting out skits. These projects teach students how to work as a team, navigating each other's strengths and weaknesses. They practice social tolerance and engage in active listening while learning how to interpret social cues and body language to create collaborative artwork. 


Grit + Perseverance 

Students in the arts receive constant, constructive feedback and understand that feedback is a tool for improvement. Artists persistently draft, practice or rehearse their work before its presentation. They develop the humility and grit to acknowledge criticism and adjust their art as needed. Grit and perseverance developed in arts education translates into other academic subjects and goes beyond secondary education. 


Creativity + Innovation 

At the center of arts education is a developing student creativity and innovation. In the arts, students are not confined by one answer. Instead, they are continually asked to try new things and seek alternatives. This kind of creative thinking is a key first step towards innovation, which is essential in an increasingly competitive world.  


Confidence + Leadership 

The presentation of their work, through exhibit or performance, gives art students a sense of accomplishment. As a result, they develop a strong sense of identity and confidence in their ability to interpret and express their opinions, driving their ability to perform as leaders in their communities. 


Lalela Students are Powerful Examples of the Positive Impact of Educational Arts

At Hout Bay High, 95% of Lalela's Seniors graduated, compared to 62% of the 2014 class overall.
The top performers in the class were all Lalela students.