About Fillmore Arts Center

Fillmore Student/Parent Handbook

download the pdf


Fillmore at a Glance

Fillmore Arts Center is an award-winning District of Columbia Public School program providing instruction in dance, music, theater, visual arts, and digital/media arts. Fillmore provides an in-depth arts education program to more than 1,600 students annually from Key, River Terrace, Ross, Stoddert and West.

In addition, Fillmore serves the greater metropolitan area through its after-school classes and summer camp.


Sm3BandPre04 Fillmore’s curriculum is child-centered and sequentially structured in accordance with the goals of the National and District of Columbia Standards for Arts Education. The core of Fillmore’s philosophy is a belief that all children should receive a skill-based, quality arts education. Many of the Fillmore teachers are professional working artists. In addition, Fillmore teachers work with each other and classroom teachers to plan lessons and integrate the arts and academic disciplines.
Each student spends a half day at Fillmore taking two hour-long classes. Every child in the early childhood grades through grade 2 has the same curriculum, rotating through visual arts, music, dance and drama over the course of the year. Students in grades 3-5 choose classes from a wide variety of art areas. Classes (except for instrumental music) change each semester. Class offerings include: drama, dance, band, strings, guitar, ukulele, digital arts, ceramics, drawing and painting, musical theater and interrelated arts. Sm3Dance2
Tsou kid1 Celebrating student achievement is a major focus of Fillmore’s program. The Annual Fillmore Arts Show and various city-wide contests provide opportunities for all visual art students to display their work. Student work also hangs at Fillmore and at the participating schools. Open houses, Concerts, and Festival Evenings showcase music, dance and drama students. Participation in these performances is an important part of the learning process and is expected.
Fillmore has been recognized as a school of excellence by The International Network of Performing & Visual Arts Schools. They also featured Fillmore as their K-8 model in their publication, 112 Models for Education in the Arts. strings04


Fillmore was a recipient of The Mayor’s Art Award. Fillmore was chosen as the first District of Columbia public school to receive a Composer in Residence grant from the Lincoln Center Program. Fillmore with Mann School was identified as a Commended School of the Arts by the U.S. Department of Education in 1984. Fillmore was honored by the Rockfeller Brothers Fund as one of the 10 best arts education schools in the country.


Fillmore’s success depends on a highly qualified staff of artist teachers and a strong administrator. They bring an extraordinary level of expertise, experience and commitment to their teaching while providing role models for their students. Broad-based community support, parental involvement, and a supportive school system have helped Fillmore to become an award- winning arts center. Click here to see a full list of our staff or click here to contact us.


Fillmore has a very active parents and community group, Friends of Fillmore, which raises funds to support the after- school and summer camp programs, and to enrich the school day program. New board members are always welcome.

Ceram & Fam 01

How the Program Works

The school year is divided into two semesters, Fall and Spring, and each school spends a day at Fillmore. The younger students take classes for one-half day, followed by the older students in grades 3-5 who take classes for the other one-half day. All Fillmore students are exposed to visual arts for the entire year; and to dance, drama, and music each for a semester.

The early childhood classes invite parents for Open House visits once per semester.
Every child in grades K, 1, and 2 has the same curriculum. Students in grades 3-5 choose classes from a wide variety of art areas. Classes (except for instrumental music) change each semester.
At the end of the semester, Festival Evenings are held where students share their work and performances with family and friends. Attendance at these evenings is an important part of the learning process and is expected.

Fillmore also sponsors after-school classes and a summer camp program. Students can take a wide variety of visual arts, gymnastics, and performing arts classes at reasonable fees. Children from ages 6-14 can participate (5-year-olds are welcome in certain after-school classes.)