The Art of Education

We help amazing art teachers grow by providing rigorous, relevant, and engaging professional development at every stage of their career.

What is The Art of Education?

The Art of Education (AOE) is an innovative higher learning institution committed to delivering amazing professional development to art educators everywhere.

The Art of Education not only promotes the idea of lifelong learning but actually makes it happen. Lifelong learning can only occur when continuous, connected, and creative content is delivered in an engaging fashion over a lifetime.

The Art of Education’s distance education courses, conferences, workshops, and other valuable resources provide unique and practical learning opportunities for every art teacher at every stage of their career.



Workshops (Coming Soon)

Online Magazine

Lesson Plans




A Letter From Our Founder

Hi, I’m Jessica Balsley. Founder and President at the Art of Education.

Several years ago as an art teacher working towards my Master’s Degree I began a search for a university with courses designed for art teachers, but came up short. 

Like so many art teachers, I struggled to find classes that were relevant, practical, and would actually teach me something valuable to my career as an art educator!

This frustration led to the creation and development of The Art of Education. That year, my husband Derek and I set out on a mission to provide Ridiculously Relevant Professional Development™ to art teachers around the world. 

Since that time, and thanks to our loyal fans, The Art of Education has become the largest provider of professional development for art teachers in the world. 

Today, hundreds of thousands of individuals read our online magazine each month while thousands of art teachers attend our conferences and rely on our online graduate classes for license renewal, salary advancement, or to secure a Master’s Degree.

As art teachers, we all have to stick together. We’re not an afterthought – and we absolutely deserve the highest quality professional development available. The Art of Education exists to empower art teachers, to help them thrive in their profession and succeed in their careers.



Jessica Balsley
Founder, The Art of Education


What do actual art teachers think?

Katie S.

“The Art of Education has been incredibly helpful! I enjoy the convenience of the online conferences, and the articles. Seeking resources on your own time to help you further develop as a professional can be daunting, but AOE has alleviated that. I feel a better sense of community in my profession through this site. I appreciate the Art of Ed staff and the advocacy they bring to the art education profession.”

Cheryl C.

“AOE is one of the absolute positive experiences to come out of technology – the bringing together of art teachers from around the world in a way that helps us to know and feel that we are not alone. It provides a way for us to connect, to learn, to enjoy each other’s successes and ideas, to seek help, and to laugh with each other. AOE, through vision and a growth mindset, has done (and continues to do) something wonderful for all of us, and I am thankful for all of you on the AOE team!”

Melissa D.

The Art of Ed really does provide relevant PD for Art Teachers! I love the enthusiasm from the creators, presenters, and artists and how it is delivered digitally, handouts and all. The Art of Ed does a great job staying on the cusp of innovative connections and education movements while breaking them down and making it manageable to understand and be applicable to the art classroom.”

Meet the Team

The Art of Education’s team of instructors, writers, professional development advisors and administrators—to say nothing of the thousands of teachers that make up our classes, attendance and readership—are the reason that the Art of Education has already impacted millions of K-12 students worldwide. Meet some of the best art teachers and art ed thought leaders in the nation.

Derek Balsley

Founder & CEO

Jessica Balsley

Founder & President

Timothy Bogatz

Content Director

Heather Crockett

Dean of the Institution

Rachel Althof

Visiting Graduate Instructor

Diana Baldensperger

Visiting Graduate Instructor

Shannon Bell

Senior Graduate Instructor

Jennifer Borel

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Joleen Buttjer

HR Manager, Registrar, Student Services

Tiffany Carr

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Patricia Christiansen

Senior Graduate Instructor

Kathleen Cigich

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Sarah Dougherty

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Alecia Eggers Kaczmarek

Content Specialist

Theresa Gillespie

Senior Graduate Instructor

Holly Hanke

Customer Happiness Guru and Office Manager

Shelly Hardin

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Tracy Hare

Content Specialist

Amanda Heyn

Senior Editor

Keith March Mistler

Visiting Graduate Instructor

Don Masse

Visiting Graduate Instructor

Andrew McCormick

Adjunct Graduate Instructor & Podcast Host

Kim Meyering

Graphic Designer

Shari Mork


Anna Nuttall

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Haley Parker

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Johanna Russell

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Carrie Russoniello

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Abby Schukei

Social Media Manager and Writer

Cindy Tolliver

Marketing Specialist and Content Coordinator

Sarah Welch

Educational Specialist

Molly Wiste

Adjunct Graduate Instructor

Work With Us

Would you like to work with The Art of Education? Maybe you’d like to be a writer, or an instructor, or a presenter at our next event!

We’re a fun group that works hard to create awesome stuff for art teachers. If you want to make a dent in the Art Ed Universe – we’d love to hear more about you!