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Digital Arts High School Teaches Through Film, Music and Game Design

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About 115 students will fire up their laptops Monday morning when a new school focused on the digital arts opens in downtown Cleveland. ideastream's David C. Barnett reports that term papers will be replaced by game design, music production and film-making.

Monday, July 28, 2014 at 5:00 am

Flat screen TVs and video projectors cover the walls at the new High School for the Digital Arts. And the teachers have stands instead of desks. Marsha Dobrzynski gave a tour, this past Friday.

MARSHA DOBRZYNSKI: It's a non-traditional school space.

That's putting it mildly. As executive director of the Center for Arts-Inspired Learning, Dobrzynski and her team of educators have spent the last three years planning for this school that emphasizes audio, video and game design skills. With backing from the Cleveland and Gund Foundations, the school will provide laptops to each student and internet access at home to support a college prep program.

MARSHA DOBRZYNSKI: Cleveland Institute of Art has a game design major now, CSU and Tri-C have film programs, Tri-C has Recording Arts. So, it was really a very natural thing.

Any student in Cleveland was eligible to enroll in the first freshman class, and Dobrzynski says the spaces filled up quickly. Although the digital arts instruction is aimed at providing high school students with career skills, the design of games, music and films will also be used in teaching core subjects like math, science, English and social studies.

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