National Standards


The Core Arts Theatre Standards were written collaboratively by members of the American Alliance for Theatre and Education and of the Educational Theatre Association, both of whom are leadership organizations of the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards (NCCAS). For more general information about the standards read the NCCAS FAQ. To create customized workbook pages that meet your student and classroom needs, visit the NCCAS website at

The Core Arts Standards feature two levels of standards: anchor standards and performance standards. Anchor standards are overarching statements of what students should know and do in all of the arts as a result of their PreK-12 education. All the arts discipline—dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts—have adopted the eleven anchor standards. Performance standards state what students should know and be able to do in a particular artistic discipline by the end of a specific grade or level.

Copyright permissions guidelines
The Core Theatre Standards and the MCAs can be downloaded, printed, and disseminated for educational purposes without charge or permission. For any other purpose, written permission from the State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education (SEADAE), EdTA, and AATE is required. Permission to reprint is not official until SEADAE and the entity requesting permission have signed the Application for Copyright Permission, and payment is submitted. Permission requests are subject to a processing fee of $25.

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46 States have adopted standards for theatre education. Theatre Standards are adopted and enforced at various levels in 32 states, while recommended standards are available and enforced at the discretion of local education officials in 14 states. 4 states and the District of Columbia currently have no standards for theatre education. The Arts Education State Policy Database contains the latest information on arts education state policies and practices.