I am currently trying to decide whether to enter teacher education school in San Francisco, or to enter the Expressive Arts Therapy program, at the California Institute for Integral Studies, also in San Francisco. In one sense, I may be able to use poetry, movement, visual art, drama-making and music with the children in a therapeutic manner, as a healing tool, in Oakland, where I live, as a public schools teacher. I feel personally very committed to this population in the community where I live. Doing such work may also help to finance the therapy program should I choose to enter it (it's three years long and costs $33,000). I'm wondering if any one else has some insight into or experience of the personal satisfaction of using expressive arts as a healing and transformational tool, in the public schools versus in expressive arts therapy private practice or agency work? I have heard of one social worker, for example, who was doing art therapy (or therapeutic art, depending on how you look at it) with kids in a homeless shelter, but left this work to be a public schools teacher, finding that her time with the children in the shelter was too short to be able to build a relationship of trust and to do transformational work. Any similar, or conflicting, experiences, I would be very happy to hear about, from public school teachers, arts therapists, or simply those who have an opinion! Thank you all very much, in advance.
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