School Funding

Carmel Valley teenager raises money for art supplies for homeless kids

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (KGTV) — A Carmel Valley teenager hopes to spread joy one brush at a time.

Kate Lee says drawing is a source of inspiration and a way to relieve stress.

“I think art has become a great emotional and mental outlet for me, which is why I find great pleasure in drawing or painting,” Kate said.

The freshman at Canyon Crest Academy wants more students to have this outlet.

“I know kids from low income families can’t participate in art because it’s too expensive or the school they go to doesn’t have the proper funding for an art program,” said Lee.

Over the summer, Lee held bake sales and taught math classes to raise money for art supplies. She ended up raising just over $700. She donated the supplies to Monarch School for homeless students.

“It really motivated me to start giving more to different schools because I think their reaction is something I would like to see from everyone,” Lee said.

As Lee tries to raise funds through his organization Arts4allKids, California voters will have their say in November.

Proponents of Proposition 28 say the measure guarantees schools more funding for arts education.

“Increase funding for arts education roughly 50% statewide in California directly to schools,” said Russ Sperling.

Sperling is the director of visual and performing arts at San Diego Unified.

“Granted, affluent parents may be able to afford piano or dance lessons on the side, but for the vast majority of San Diego Unified students, that’s not an option, so if we don’t offer that in school, these students are growing up without an experience that we think is very basic,” Sperling said.

An experience Lee can’t imagine not having.

“Every time I draw or paint I get rid of all the negative emotions I had that day and generally feel much happier,” Lee said.

She hopes other students will join his organization.