Mission & Milestones
Dancing Classrooms Philly’s mission is to foster self–esteem, social awareness, mutual respect, teamwork and joy in young people and their communities through social dance education and performance.
Dancing Classrooms Philly and partner organization Musicopia’s shared vision is to use the power of the Arts to transform the lives of ALL children and youth. This will be guided and informed by our belief in and commitment to our values, which are to:
- Provide pathways to the arts for the students we serve
- Inspire learning through the arts
- Champion cultural and human diversity
- Promote the development of self–efficacy
- Create environments of mutual respect, well–being, and belonging
- Support students in finding safe spaces for self–expression
- Enrich the communities in which our students live and thrive
- DCP was launched in June 2007 as the principal initiative of Arts in Schools Collaborative by local advocates Jane Brooks, Joyce Burd and Harvey Kimmel (right).
- Since 2007, we have worked with more than 41,000 students in public, charter, special needs, and parochial schools across the Delaware Valley. In our founding year, we served 50 classrooms – more than any other pilot program in the country at that time.
- In 2008-09, we created the Dancing Classrooms Philly Academy (formerly known as the Saturday Scholarship Program) to expand our reach and offer more specialized dance lessons over a 10-week Saturday course at three locations. Soon after, the DCP Allstars were formed for those who excelled and wished to go even further in their dance studies.
- In 2012, Dancing Classrooms Philly formed a dynamic partnership with Musicopia to provide both organizations with a more efficient infrastructure while advancing their missions and community impact. Musicopia and DCP are both committed to working with children and schools that lack adequate arts education programs or have little access to the regions’ cultural life.
- In 2013, we expanded our programming to reach not only fifth grade students, but also eighth grade students and students in special needs schools.
- In 2017 DCP celebrated its 10th anniversary. Click here to read reflections from the DCP family and click here to read a feature piece in The Dance Journal.
- In 2019-20, DCP began offering residencies with gender neutral circles. Independence Charter School, Penn Alexander School, and Woodlynde School were the first to pilot circles arranged randomly, rather than by gender identity.
- For the start of the 2020-21 school year, DCP debuted a new look. We work diligently to strengthen the inclusivity of our residency, and this is just one of the many ways we are able to show respect for all individuals and promote our mission of fostering self-esteem, social awareness and joy.
- In response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, DCP began offering virtual, hybrid, and in-person socially-distanced residencies for the 2020-21 school year.
- During the 2020-21 school year, DCP began offering Latin, Hip-Hop, and Salsa residencies to students in grades 3 and up, as well as at after school organizations and community groups.
- During the 2021-2022 school year, DCP celebrated its 15 year anniversary! Watch the video below to learn about DCP’s origins and see how we grew to be who we are today.