The Magic School Bus Initiative: The Central Bank partners with the NAGB to encourage school tours

By Malika Pryor Martin

Thanks to the support and partnership of the Central Bank of The Bahamas, the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (NAGB) is pleased to announce limited free bus service for primary and secondary school tours! At this time, the offer is available to all government schools in New Providence. “The Magic School Bus” Initiative, as it is affectionately titled, will facilitate the visitation of more than 800 students to The Bahamas’ preeminent arts institution.

There is truly something magical about creating opportunities for young people that expand their worldview and, correspondingly, their own sense of self. Providing that opportunity is one of our most valued institutional goals at the NAGB. The students that we are striving to serve will be the first generation, in its entirety, to know that their national landscape includes the NAGB and we want to ensure that that recognition is an endearing, fruitful and lasting one.

Twenty-four bused trips, fifteen of which are being funded by the Central Bank of The Bahamas and nine by the NAGB, have been sponsored. Each bus is large enough to hold a classroom of school children and opportunities to access a “Magic School Bus” will be available for the duration of this school year and next – should funding remain. In order to ensure fairness, eight buses have been reserved for primary school, junior high and high school levels, respectively.

Students on a school tour at the NAGB. All images courtesy of the NAGB

In addition to free transportation, the NAGB has been busy working to make the student museum experiences even more special and easier. To eliminate participation barriers for teachers, we have enhanced tour offerings to include customized school tours. These visits–which can now be planned from the NAGB website,–are geared to meet the curricular needs of educators beyond art specific courses. With free busing, trips may cost a school or parents little more than $3 to visit the museum. When registering, simply indicate that your school is eligible to receive support for transportation in the details/comments section of the form or contact Malika Pryor-Martin at 328-5800 or [email protected] regarding your interest in “The Magic School Bus” Initiative.

Through targeted community based efforts, that include individual school visitation, the NAGB will continue to encourage our partners to share our worthy goal to expose Bahamian youth to their visual arts legacy. The NAGB wishes to thank the Central Bank of The Bahamas for its grant, without which, this programme would not have been realized.