About

Who should join UNITY?
Organizations whose members offer dance instruction.

  • Organizations whose members impart knowledge about dance.
  • Organizations whose members promote and support the art of dance.

How does UNITY do these things?

  • Active individual participation on committees, which includes researching topics and taking action.
  • Partnering with other organizations working in similar areas.
  • Developing resources to support UNITY’s work.

Values – the principles that guide our work

UNITY organizations are on the cutting edge. Encourage your organization to join UNITY today and take an active part in the discussions that may affect all dancers, educators and students.

 

Mission

Want to know more about the mission of UNITY?

UNITY is a non-profit coalition of dance education and associated organizations. It promotes cooperation and dialogue within the dance profession and speaks with a unified voice on dance education and dance-related issues.

 

Purposes

What purpose does UNITY serve?

UNITY exists to:

  • Promote cooperation and dialogue between among sectors.
  • Address certification and professional standards.
  • Promote dialogue with the public.
  • Speak with one voice on the issues of dance.
  • Promote research on kinesthetic and cognitive development through dance.
  • Disseminate information of value to the field.
  • Improve the lives of dancers and educators through services to the field (health insurance, etc.).
  • Involve and engage a broad range of dance organizations.
  • Monitor and address issues of importance to our constituents.

How does UNITY do these things?

  • Active individual participation on committees, which includes researching topics and taking action.
  • Partnering with other organizations working in similar areas.
  • Developing resources to support UNITY’s work.

Values – the principles that guide our work
Purposes – the reasons for the formation of UNITY

 

Values

We Believe and Support These Principles

  • All sectors are created equal 
  • Access to dance should be available to all
  • Dance teaches lifelong skills
  • Best practices and professional responsibility improve our field
  • Dance educators are valuable professionals
  • The body-mind connection is honored as an integral component of learning

History

UNITY, Inc. – Uniting America’s Dance Organizations

In August 1995, representatives of dance teacher organizations from around the country began to meet informally to discuss mutual concerns. Historically, the organizations had tended to view each other more as competitors than allies, but as leaders of the individual organizations became acquainted, they recognized that they shared many goals and that working together would benefit the dance community.

The first UNITY meeting was initiated and hosted by Dance Masters of America’s National Executive Committee in New York City in August 1995. Subsequent meetings have included…

UNITY August meeting hosts 

1995 August meeting hosted by DMA in NYC
1996 August meeting hosted by SADM in Memphis, TN
1997 August meeting hosted by DTCB/AS in Needham, MA
1998 August meeting hosted by CDM in Raleigh, NC
1999 August meeting hosted by CNADM in Chicago, IL
2000 August meeting hosted by DMA in NYC
2001 August meeting hosted by NDA in Reston, VA
2002 August meeting hosted by DA of RI in Warwick, RI 

Since 2003, all August meeting have been by Conference Call

In addition, each January since 1997, a meeting has been held in New York City. Total membership in the organizations participating in UNITY meetings over the years numbers in the tens of thousands.

In January 1998, representatives from 19 organizations met to form a permanent coalition. Some of the member organizations have been influencing dance education in the US for more than 100 years, few have been in existence for less than 20 years. UNITY, Inc. includes large national organizations as well as mid-size organizations and smaller, local associations. Each is valued for its individual identity and retains autonomy, while working cooperatively within UNITY.

Issues identified to be addressed include, in no particular order:

  • Standards and processes for dance teacher certification
  • Teacher training and continuing education
  • IRS classification of dance instruction in Amusement & Recreation Services
  • Effects of competitions on dance education/training
  • Unethical practices in our profession
  • Music licensing for dance classes
  • Group health and other insurance
  • Advertising costs in dance publications and general population publications
  • Mechanisms for sharing ideas and experience among organizations
  • Developing a list “bank” of master teachers and adjudicators
  • Educating the public about quality dance education/training

 

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