First of all, there are very many careers in art that branch from being an occupational artist, an art therapist, or even a military photographer, and within these careers are many flavours and focuses for all types of people, making art a gargantuan umbrella of opportunity, and of course, this is very important; however not every person who makes art does it was a job, as important as these jobs are. A child could draw dinosaurs, their parents could take them to a museum, and this could cause a chain reaction that led that child to be a palaeontologist. A child who draws fairies could be read fairy tales on a night, leading to a love of literature and books with leads them to be an author. Education leads to jobs period, so what makes art education specifically so important?
Its obvious that one would need so know maths to be a mathematician, but the formulas aren’t all there is, right? Art is a factor of human life which teaches the mind to stay open, weighing up colours and sounds and feelings to create the best or most thought-provoking experience is a critical process, and practicing it develops an ingenuity which can lead to experimentation in all fields. The mathematician might be stuck n a particular difficult equation, and then their inspiration of art in their childhood comes to mind, and the building blocks of critical thinking and logic aid their solving it.
Is getting a job the most important thing however? No. Art is first and foremost a mode of expression, allowing the creator to channel their emotions in a healthy and productive way. Many children grow into adults with very few coping mechanisms, healthy or not, and thus do more damage to themselves by not knowing how to deal with their already negative feelings while growing up, allowing them to build up until they burst; Art is quite literally a blank canvas to let it all out on. If children grew up with creation always as an accessible option, this wouldn’t build up, and as bad things come and go, they would have an outlet that they could rely on that is not only healthy but beautiful. Doing activities you’re passionate about releases endorphins which will increase your mood, and lead to overall much more mentally-well kids.
Art education is a difficult task to leave to parents who were artistically neglected in their youth, and while I believe everyone should be encouraged to take up a creative hobby, schools and clubs are where it is most important, to socialise kids into a lifestyle of expression where their creation is valued equally and shared with peers as a social activity too. Creation is treated too much like an additional hobby in life, when rather it is a natural human feature that must be exercised just like a muscle, and I firmly believe this would lead to a happier and more fulfilled population proceeding into the future.