Art Education Grants

The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent agency for the U.S. government. This agency provides teachers and organizations that are looking to expand Arts programs in their school, school district or state, with a variety of grants for certain projects that can be identified as displaying artistic excellence. The following will provide a detailed guide to art education grants, including what they are, how they work and who they are for.

What Are Art Education Grants?

Education grants are designed by the NEA to provide both students in school and those within the education environment around them with grants for certain art-based projects. These grants extend to any student in pre-k through 12th grade, the civic leaders and teachers that provide support for the students and the schools that these students attend. They are doled out for any project that the NEA deems to be exemplary in its artistic merit. The project categories for these grants include folk arts, art education, design, dance, literature, media arts, musical theater, music, visual arts and opera, among a slew of others.

There are three types of grants available for these projects, which are referred to as Collective Impact Grants, Direct Learning Grants and Professional Development Grants. The first of these focuses on providing funds for communities that participate in arts over a certain period of time. This can cover all schools, all students and all districts. These grants are mainly used to increase arts education for all students within a certain district or state. The Direct Learning Grant is meant to increase students’ skill when it comes to the arts. These projects are typically lengthier ones that focus on providing students with comprehensive arts education with teachers and professional artists, while also ensuring that the students’ education is rigorous and aligned with national education levels. Professional Development Grants are designed to provide funds for teachers that are educating their students about the arts.

How These Grants Work

In essence, these grants are meant to assist students, teachers or communities in the creation and teaching of art. When it comes to arts education grants, any student, school or community that wants to receive one of these three grants must first fill out an application describing their project goals and how they will achieve them. The projects themselves don’t have to take place in a school, but can instead occur at community centers, arts organizations, public housing, juvenile facilities and school buildings. However, Collective Grants are designed to implement a more systemic change in a district or state when it comes to raising arts awareness.

Who Qualifies For These Grants?

Individuals can’t specifically apply for one of the three art education grants that are available, but U.S. organizations that are tax exempt and non-profit can apply, as can units of local or state government and tribal communities. The organizations that qualify for these grants include arts organizations, arts agencies, school districts and any entity that further advances the Arts.


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