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Ventura County News Roundup

COUNTYWIDE : 3 Teachers Among Finalists for Award

January 23, 1991|MAJA RADEVICH

Three Ventura County teachers have been nominated for the BRAVO Award, sponsored by the Music Center of Los Angeles, for making the arts an integral part of the curriculum.

Darlene Sweatt of Elmhurst Elementary School in Ventura, Bruce Kanegai of Simi Valley High School and Patti Post of Ventura High School were three of 11 finalists selected from five Southern California counties.

The BRAVO awards were created nine years ago by the Music Center Education Division "to recognize outstanding educators who either teach the arts specifically or general education teachers who incorporate the arts in their day-to-day curriculum," said Kathy Bornstein of the Music Center. "Art education dollars are dwindling, and this is our way of reminding people how important the arts are."

Sweatt, a fifth-grade teacher, has put on such large-scale productions as "The Nutcracker," an annual presentation in which students dance, sing and act.

"I hope more people realize that the arts aren't just a nice extra activity, but that they're at the core of education," Sweatt said.

Kanegai is a visual arts teacher who has won numerous honors and was a finalist in the awards two years ago.

"It's a great honor to be named along with all these great teachers," he said. "We have a chance here to inspire the young people to accomplish some wonderful things."

Post, also a visual arts teacher, runs a student gallery at Ventura High School and coordinates an annual Italian chalk-painting competition.

All teachers were nominated by their principals. Two winners will be selected from the 11 finalists--one arts specialist and one general educator. Winners will be announced April 4 at a dinner at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles.

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