NYS Arts In Correctional Education Network (NYSACEN)


Through informal gatherings and presentations on arts learning at NYS Association of Incarcerated Education Programs conferences (http://www.nysaiep.org/), representatives from Island Academy, Rikers Island; Passages Academy, New York City;  the Queens Museum; Office of The Sheriff, County of Monroe; Rochester City School District's Youth and Justice Program, and Dale Davis, Executive Director of The New York State Literary Center, formed the NYS Arts In Correctional Education Network (NYSACEN). NYSACEN first met formally in the offices of The New York State Council on The Arts in the fall of 2006. 

 NYSCAEN came together again in December 2006 at the offices of Pressure Point Films (http://www.pressurepointfilms.com/thehiphopproject.html) in New York for a screening of �The Hip Hop Project� with the film�s star, Chris �Kazi� Rolle.


Chris �Kazi� Rolle at screening of �The Hip Hop Project� for NYSACEN Steering Committee

(Photo: Michael Starenko)


Following that initial screening, �The Hip Hop Project� was screened at the Monroe County Jail, Passages Academy, and Island Academy, Rikers Island. Chris �Kazi� Rolle screened the film and led a discussion following the screening at each site.


In October  NYSACEN was introduced to o a national audience at the Arts In Criminal Justice conference in Philadelphia. NYSACEN�s session, �Communicating the Concept of Community Through the Integration of Arts for Incarcerated Youth.� included examples of student / inmate writing, visual art, CDs, and DVDs; a discussion of the effects of arts learning and the benefits to faculty and students / inmates; an art project as part of an entire course of instruction; and the benefits of a statewide network. An exhibition of visual art by student / inmates at Island Academy, Rikers Island was curated and hung during the conference by the Queens Museum as part of NYSACEN�s presentation.


NYSACEN�s mission:

  • To develop a support community and a network of resources;

  • To facilitate dialogue and collaboration among arts organizations, artists, and correctional education programs;

  • To support artists and arts organizations with the knowledge and training needed in order to better serve correctional education.

The New York State Literary Center administers the statewide network.