McLean Project for the Arts programs are supported in part by the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, ArtsFairfax and generous organizations and individuals including: TD Bank, J.V. Schiro-Zavela Foundation, New Dominion Women’s Club, Woman’s Club of McLean, Freedom Bank and Sundance.

MPA ArtReach has a number of dedicated community partners, including: Fairfax County Public Schools, SPARC Solutions, Lewinsville Senior Center, Second Story, and Service Source.

Today’s ongoing global pandemic has interrupted education around the globe. While online instruction is meeting the needs of many, the digital divide is impacting our area’s most at-risk students, as well as older adults and those with developmental disabilities and different learning styles. To this end, MPA’s ArtReach is reaching across the divide by providing hands-on, printed visual art activities to our local community partners, reaching over 500 families each week.

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MPA takes our programs, into the schools reaching every member of the student body. Our resident artist in the schools focuses on special programs and extended learning activities. We feature docent-led gallery tours for elementary school students, including tours and hands-on art activities that demonstrate art principles and incorporate many of the concepts included in the SOLs. We provide free bus transportation to MPA’s galleries to Title 1 schools, schools designated by Fairfax County Public Schools as “at-risk” schools with large numbers of English as second language students or students who qualify for free or reduced lunches.


We also serve schools with a diverse menu of in-school slide lectures and classroom art projects, after-school art workshops and artist visits to art clubs. Recently, our new special education component provided in-gallery tours, art classes and follow-up slide talks and classroom art projects for high school students with special needs who do not receive art instruction or enrichment as part of their classroom instruction. Our ArtReach sessions are the only in-school art educational experience available to them. We are also reaching out to teens through a new program with the Old Firehouse Teen Center in McLean.


All of these programs are offered to schools free of charge. Please contact Sharon Fishel, Director of ArtReach Programs, at 703-790-1953 or if you are interested in scheduling an activity for your school.


Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) and McLean Project for the Arts (MPA) have established a formal partnership with emphasis on the MPA ArtReach program that provides exhibition tours and hands on art projects for elementary school students. Tours, conducted by professional art educators, demonstrate art principles and incorporate the concepts included in the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL). The gallery tour aspect of MPA ArtReach also includes free bus transportation to the galleries for Title 1 school students.

Through the MPA ArtReach program, the partnership also provides guest artists to conduct workshops at schools; bring artists-in-residence to students; offer programs designed to meet the needs of middle and high school special education classes; and provide exhibition space for the annual Youth Art Show in March, and for student artwork at MPAartfest, MPA’s outdoor fall arts festival.

FCPS informs schools and staff members about the services available from MPA, provides access for MPA representatives to meet with FCPS faculty, and work in tandem with MPA personnel to design and develop programs to meet the needs of FCPS students. A partnership steering committee meets annually to oversee and review all programs that fall under the partnership. Yearly program evaluations, based on stated goals and objectives are held in collaboration with FCPS and MPA representatives.

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